01/18/2024, 18.03
Send to a friend

Vietnamese Communist Party delegation meets with Pope Francis

The delegation was led by Lê Hoài Trung, chairman of the Communist Party’s Commission for External Relations. The new phase that began with the appointment of a permanent Vatican representative in April will see the Vatican Secretary for Relations with States travel to Hanoi followed Card Parolin by the end of the year. For Archbishop Gallagher, “there will be a visit” by the pope, but “We will do things gradually”.

Vatican City (AsiaNews) – In a new significant step in relations between the Holy See and Vietnam, Pope Francis received a delegation from the Communist Party of Vietnam in audience at the Vatican this morning, led by Lê Hoài Trung, an experienced diplomat who chairs the party’s Commission for External Relations.

Meanwhile, Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher is set to travel to Hanoi this April to prepare a visit to Vietnam by the Vatican Secretary of State, Card Pietro Parolin, which will take place by the end of the year.

Although the Holy See did not issue a statement, the meeting was reported among today's audiences with Pope Francis and a short video shows the pontiff talking to the delegation and receiving a painting as a gift from his Vietnamese guests.

Speaking to journalists on the sidelines of another event at the Vatican, Archbishop Gallagher announced that he will go to Vietnam in April, underlining the importance of this meeting, as well as expressing hope that it will bring further benefits to the life of Vietnamese Catholic communities.

The head of the Vietnamese delegation, Lê Hoài Trung, is an important player in Vietnamese foreign policy as chairman of the Party's external relations body.

Today's meeting must be linked to the process towards full diplomatic relations between the Holy See and Vietnam. It follows the visit to the Vatican in July by Vietnamese President Võ Văn Thưởng, and the signing of an agreement enabling Pope Francis to appoint for the first time a Vatican envoy to Hanoi, Archbishop Marek Zalewski, who is also apostolic nuncio to Singapore.

Archbishop Gallagher also spoke about President Võ Văn Thưởng’s invitation to the pope to visit Vietnam officially formulated in a letter sent to the pontiff a few days before Christmas.

“We will do things gradually," said the Secretary for Relations with States. “I think there will be a visit. But there are a couple of steps to take before this is appropriate.”

"I think the pope is keen to go," he added, and “certainly the Catholic community is keen for the pope to go and thinks it would be a very good message for the whole region.”

Vietnam, he noted, is an “important country”, describing it as “a sort of economic miracle in many respects.”

Send to a friend
Printable version
See also
Vietnam’s diplomacy on the move between China and the Vatican
09/04/2024 15:23
Holy See and Viet Nam agree on a permanent Vatican representative in Ha Noi
27/07/2023 20:35
Vietnam has officially invited Pope Francis
15/12/2023 17:08
Vietnamese President Thưởng, promoter of dialogue with Pope Francis, resigns
20/03/2024 17:49
Pope talks about the Middle East, the Holy Land and the food crisis with Bush


Subscribe to Asia News updates or change your preferences

Subscribe now
“L’Asia: ecco il nostro comune compito per il terzo millennio!” - Giovanni Paolo II, da “Alzatevi, andiamo”