Most Reverend Agustin Roman
The child of Rosendo and Juana, he was born in the Cuban countryside, on the "Casas Viejas" farm, in the municipality of San Antonio de los Baños, province of Havana, on May 5, 1928.
He began his active piety and devoted life in the Catholic Church as a teenager, growing into a true apostle, evangelizing friends and neighbors. He was one of the founding students of the San Alberto Magno Seminary in Colón, Matanzas, where he studied philosophy. He completed his priesthood studies at the Seminary of the Fathers of the Foreign Missions in Montreal, Canada, and was ordained priest in Colon on July 5th, 1959, by the hands of Bishop Alberto Martin Villaverde, Bishop of Matanzas.
Because of his apostolic zeal and his intense pastoral activity, he was harassed, persecuted, and briefly imprisoned, before being expelled from Cuba in 1961 aboard the ship Covadonga by the Marxist regime along with 129 other priests and Bishop Eduardo Boza Masvidal.
He worked as a missionary in Chile and arrived in Miami in 1966. While chaplain of Mercy Hospital and assistant at St. Kieran's parish, Archbishop Coleman Carroll entrusted him with the construction of the Ermita de la Caridad, later declared a National Shrine, and of which he was Rector until his retirement in 2003.
In 1979 Pope John Paul II appointed him Titular Bishop of Sertei and Auxiliary of the Archdiocese of Miami, where Archbishop Edward McCarthy consecrated him on March 24th of that same year. He was the first Cuban to be ordained bishop in the United States.