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Lent of prayer and solidarity with Catholic and non-Catholic poor in Bùi Chu



April 12,2014: Lent has been a time for initiatives in favour of the poor, the marginalised and the unfortunate in the Diocese of Bui Chu, in the province of Nam Dinh, one of the first in northern Vietnam to experience evangelisation in the past.
During recent weeks, youth groups and students also organised prayer and fasting in preparation for Easter as well as special gatherings such as spiritual retreats for the less fortunate and social activities for marginalised people. It was joint venture of priests and the faithful.
Responding with enthusiasm to Pope Francis' call, Caritas volunteers took part in charitable works dedicated to the poor. More than 500 people benefitted from the various initiatives without distinction of religion, Catholic and not Catholic, all victims of discrimination and living on the edge of society. In association with diocesan Caritas director Fr Joseph Tran Hung Đạo, Mgr Tôma Aquinô Vũ Đình Hiệu, bishop of Bùi Chu and president of the Commission for Social Activities Caritas Vietnam, closely followed all the initiatives.
Accompanied by a group of nuns, the prelate visited in person the poorest parishes and shelters in five districts. The Christian community is particularly active in education, health and social affairs.
Vietnam's 87 million people include 48 per cent Buddhists, more than 7 per cent Catholics, 5.6 per cent syncretistic and 20 per cent atheist.




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