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Felix Felix Varela was a multi-lingual priest born in Havana in 1788. Growing up in Florida, Felix decided to return to Cuba to join the priesthood. As an academic, he was heavily involved in teaching philosophy, and published several works, including an essay arguing against slavery in Cuba. This led to his receiving the death sentence in 1823. Escaping to New York, he was met with an inundation of Irish refugees, who were in desperate need of help. Felix learned Gaelic so he could better serve the growing Catholic community there. In 2012 , he was declared “Venerable” for his virtuous life. From the Latin meaning “happy or fortunate,” the name Felix would dignify any baby boy.

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