19 April, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 03/30/2004
vietnam
Martyred Priest revered by Christians and non-Christians alike

Bac Lieu (AsiaNews/Ucan) – Pilgrims came in droves to honor the tomb of a martyred priest who was killed with his parishioners on March 12 1946. The anniversary of the death of Father Francois Xavier Truong Buu Diep brought more than 30,000 Catholics, Protestants and non-Christians to Tac Say parish in the Bac Lieu province, 1,990 kilometers south of Ha Noi, to offer respect and gratitude to the holy man who many say is responsible for healing of physical ailments,  increased prosperity and good fortune. The current parish priest Father Jean Baptiste Tran Duc Hung led an outdoor anniversary Mass with 18 other priests, marking the day of Diep's martyrdom 60 years before.

Father Diep was born in 1897 and was ordained a priest in 1924, after completing studies at Phnom Penh Major Seminary in Cambodia. During his ministry as a priest in Vietnam, the country was torn with conflict between religious and political factions, and he was advised by an ecclesial superior to leave the area for a safer one. "I live among my flock and I will die among them. I will not go anywhere" the priest stated. Later, he and 30 lay Catholics were captured by enemy forces and held in a rice paddy storehouse. The priest's body was later found in a nearby pond, though authorities do not agree who killed him, and why.

Now pilgrims line up to touch his tomb and statue and give gifts of incense, candles, money, food and prayers. During the anniversary celebration, believers brought suckling pigs, roast pork, cake, flowers and fruit in place on tables in front of the shrine. Local boarding houses were filled to capacity, charging three times the regular price to the willing travelers. A 60-year old pilgrim from Ho Chi Minh City said that her 50-member group was fortunate to find a place to sleep on the steps of the rectory. "Father Diep cured me soon after I visited his tomb," she stated, referring to the severe arthritis that had previously prevented her from walking properly. Since then, she comes annually to thank him, bringing friends who also seek physical and spiritual favors.  Thousands of pilgrims have left expressions of gratitude for answered prayers with small stone slabs engraved with the words, "Grateful to Father Diep" to be placed on the walls surrounding the church. Many overseas Vietnamese also come and pray to the late priest. Father Hung said that the church has become a popular pilgrimage site in the region since the 1980's, after reports of answered prayers circulated among the people. It was officially recognized as a pilgrimage site by the diocese in 1996.

On February 24th, Bishop Emmanuel Le Phong Thuan of Can Tho celebrated Mass, to mark the beginning of construction of a 2,000 seat parish church to replace the current structure built in 1963. The Tac Say Catholic community, established in 1925 with 200 parishioners, now has 1,500 Catholics.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
11/12/2004 VIETNAM
Protestant clergyman sentenced to three years in prison
11/08/2004 VIETNAM
New Ordinance on Religions does not provide freedom, says the Archbishop of Huê
09/07/2004 LAOS
Violence against Christians in Vientiane and Luang Phrabang
04/30/2005 VIETNAM
Hanoi frees prisoners of conscience on the anniversary of reunification
10/08/2008 VIETNAM
At a difficult time for Vietnamese Church, ordination of bishop of Bac Ninh
by Nguyen Hung

Editor's choices
VATICAN
Pope: on the persecution of Christians, the international community should "not stand by mute and inactive” and “look away”For the sixth time in a week, Pope Francis mentioned the martyrdom of Christians in today’s Regina Caeli (the Marian prayer at Easter), slamming the indifference of the international community towards this "alarming failure to protect basic human rights.” Today’s martyrs "are many, and we can say that they are more numerous than in the first centuries." In addition, “Faith in the resurrection of Jesus and the hope He has brought to us is the most beautiful gift that a Christian can and must offer his brothers and sisters. To one and all, therefore, do not tire of repeating: Christ is Risen!”
ASIA
Easter: The silence of the innocent and the gag
by Bernardo CervelleraViolations of religious freedom and the West's hypocricy surrounding this issue are likely to drag the world into an unprecedented chaos. But even in silence - of death accepted for love or death inflicted by power - God is at work. An indestructible hope rises on Easter morning and a small opening of the heart is just enough for it to invade a lifetime. Happy Easter.
IRAN
Time for a deal with Tehran, a reliable partner against the Islamic State group
by Bernardo Cervellera A framework agreement on the Iranian nuclear issue has to be inked by 31 March. US Republicans, Israel and Saudi Arabia are fiercely opposed to it for ulterior motives. Hassan Rouhani wants Iran to come back into the international fold. Tehran is playing a mediating role in the Middle East. For Vatican nuncio, “there is no evidence that Iran is preparing a nuclear bomb.”

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.