Pope arrives in Cuba on mission to renew the faith

ANDREA RODRIGUEZ NICOLE WINFIELD Associated Press Published:

SANTIAGO, Cuba (AP) -- Pope Benedict XVI has touched down in Cuba 14 years after John Paul II's historic visit, on a mission to renew the faith in Latin America's least Catholic country.

Cuban President Raul Castro is greeting Benedict at the airport, just days after Benedict declared the island's Marxist system outdated.

The pontiff will rally tens of thousands of believers later Monday at a huge outdoor Mass in this colonial city's main square. Workers there have put up a large, blue-and-white stage crowned by graceful arches in the shape of a papal miter.

Fewer than 10 percent of Cubans are practicing Catholics.