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Vietnam's new priests told to embrace all people

The Church in the Southeast Asian country has ordained 141 priests and 153 deacons this year

Archbishop Joseph Nguyen Nang ordains a priest at Notre Dame Cathedral in Ho Chi Minh City on June 24

Archbishop Joseph Nguyen Nang ordains a priest at Notre Dame Cathedral in Ho Chi Minh City on June 24. (Photo: tgpsaigon.net)

Published: June 27, 2022 06:55 AM GMT

Updated: June 27, 2022 08:29 AM GMT

Archbishop Joseph Nguyen Nang of Ho Chi Minh City has called on new priests to embrace all people including those who are obstinate and sinful.

He was speaking after ordaining 19 priests at the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus held at Notre Dame Cathedral on June 24.

"We are called by God to love his flocks of sheep that are wounded, disabled, sinful and defective. It is because God loves his people and invites us to come to them. They are our reason for living and the meaning of life," Archbishop Nang said.

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The deputy of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Vietnam also reminded local people to thank God for offering priests to them. "We must love, respect and owe a deep debt of gratitude to priests who are sent to gather, proclaim the word of God and give God’s grace to us,” he said.

Seven other priests were also ordained in the dioceses of Bui Chu and Da Nang.

Archbishop Joseph Vu Van Thien of Hanoi told 11 new transitional deacons to walk on the way of serving communities while ordaining them at St. Joseph Cathedral.

“You are given a diaconate to be servers like Jesus. You take the vow of celibacy to bring your whole heart to people, to bring them peace, joy and salvation, to accept all people as your family"

Noting that people today abuse the word "service" to do business and earn profits, the prelate said serving in the Church is like Jesus who washed the apostles’ feet with his love. 

“You are given a diaconate to be servers like Jesus. You take the vow of celibacy to bring your whole heart to people, to bring them peace, joy and salvation, to accept all people as your family. Wherever you are assigned to, the people and their traditions, culture and customs must be yours,” he said.

Bishop Emmanuel Nguyen Hong Son of Ba Ria ordained six transitional deacons at the Marian Shrine of Bai Dau in Vung Tau. 

This year the Church in Vietnam serving seven million people has ordained 141 priests and 153 deacons.

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