Nguyễn Thiện Nhân, secretary of the HCM City Party Committee, visits and offers best wishes to the HCM City Archdiocese prior to Lunar New Year 2020. —Photo courtesy of HCM City Party Committee
HCM CITY — Secretary of the HCM City Party Committee Nguyễn Thiện Nhân on Monday extended best wishes to religious dignitaries and followers in the city on the occasion of the Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday, which starts this weekend (Jan 25).
Visiting the Việt Nam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) Central Committee, Nhân on behalf of the city leaders extended their best regards to Buddhist dignitaries, monks, nuns and followers throughout the country.
Nhân praised the VBS’s activities in recent years, especially its social and charitable activities, saying that the contributions of Buddhist dignitaries and followers will continue to improve SBV’s development.
Last year VBS raised VNĐ2.4 trillion (US$103.788 million), of which HCM City Buddhist Sangha raised more than VNĐ550 billion for charity, humanitarian and social activities in the city, according to Nhân.
He also praised the VBS for organising the UN Day of Vesak 2019.
On the same day, Nhân and the delegation also visited and offered best wishes to the HCM City Archdiocese, sending best wishes for health, happiness and peace to priests, local Catholic dignitaries and followers.
Nhân praised the contributions of the Bishop and Catholic dignitaries and followers, especially for their charitable and environmental protection activities.
In 2019, Catholic dignitaries and followers contributed more than VNĐ100 billion to the city’s social security, education and healthcare activities.
Nhân said that he hoped they would continue to join hands with local residents to further the city’s socio-economic development.
Archbishop Nguyễn Năng also wished the city’s Party Committee Secretary and city leaders good health.
HCM City authorities have recently announced the Thủ Thiêm Catholic Church complex and Thủ Thiêm Congregation of the Lovers of the Holy Cross in District 2 will be preserved as national relics at the city level under the Cultural Heritage Law, according to Nhân.
“This shows the city’s recognition of the great contributions of the Catholic community to the city’s development,” Nhân said.
On the same day, Nhân visited and extended regards to the chairman of the VBS’s Executive Council Most Venerable Thích Thiện Nhơn at Minh Đào Pagoda in District 3.
Nhơn said the UN Day of Vesak 2019 attracted over 10,000 Buddhist dignitaries, monks, nuns and followers from 120 countries. “VBS will continue to contribute to the cause of national construction and development.”
In addition, Nhân also visited and send wishes to the Most Venerable Thích Trí Quảng, deputy head of the Supreme Patriarch Council of VBS, at Huê Nghiêm Pagoda in District 2.
He also visited and sent Tết greetings to Cardinal Jean Baptiste Phạm Minh Mẫn, former archbishop of the HCM City Archdiocese.
The same day in Hà Nội, chairman of the capital city's People's Committee Nguyễn Đức Chung visited the Hà Nội St Cathedral Parish, to extend his new year wishes to the leader, Pastor Anton Nguyễn Văn Thắng, and the religious followers.
He informed the catholic followers there about Hà Nội's authorities' policies to ensure that all social policy beneficiaries and poor households will have a warm Tết holiday.
Chairman Chung on the occasion has presented Tết gifts to 60 struggling families in the area. — VNS