On Thursday, February 8, 2018, the great event of the Congregation of Mission in Vietnam was the Mass that established the New Province at the Sacred Heart Church in Dalat. Although the weather was quite cold in the morning, the guests still arrived in the provincial compound.
The Congregation also welcomed two dear Bishops of the Diocese of Dalat: Bishop Antoine Vu Huyen and Vice-Bishop Dominic Nguyen Van Manh. Bishop John Do Van Ngan, Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Xuan Loc, and Bishop Joseph Nguyen Van Yen, former bishop of Phat Diem were present, as well as many Superiors of the Orders, the Congregations, and Priests inside and outside the Diocese of Dalat
On this occasion, the Province of Vietnam welcomed Rev. Father Tomaž Mavrič, CM from Rome, the first visit to Vietnam since his election in 2016. Along with him were Rev. Father Mathew Kallammakal, CM General Counselor and Rev. Father Giuseppe Maria Turati, CM Secretary General.
There were also Visitors and Superiors of the other Vincentian Provinces present: Father Christian Mauvais, Visitor of the French Province and other confreres from France. Father Michael Nguyen Hung Manh, Provincial Representative, Eastern Province of the United States, Father Gregorio Banaga Labus, Visitor of the Philippines, Father Tomichan Joshep, Visitor of Southern India, Father F. E. Labitag, Visitor of China-Taiwan, Father Jasso Jaroslav, Visitor of Slovakia, Father M. Edi Frasetyo, Visitor of Indonesia, Father Joseph Pham Minh, Provincial Representative, Western Province of the United States, Father Manimtim Victorio Marcelo – President of Adamson University, Philippines and some Fathers conselors of the provincial councils.
In addition, the Mass also had the presence of all the religious, especially those who represent the branches of the Vincentian Family in Vietnam, the Benefactors and Relatives of the Congregation, as well as the parishioners far and near to share the joy of the community.
The Mass began with the entrance song by the Seminarians. To express the communion in the Church, the Choir sang the Mass inLatin, with the presence of the Four Bishops and over 120 Priests in and out of the Congregation concelebrating, and 8 deacons.
During the sermon the Rev. Father Superior General reviewed the history of the Congregation from the first missionary footsteps of foreign fathers from 1928 until now. Father recalled history to show that setting up a new Province was a process and was thankful for God’s providence. He also recalled the four main themes of the closing letter of the jubilee year on 25 January, 2018 which he had sent to the entire Vincentian Family. At the same time, he shared the advantages of the new province that the other provinces in the world did not have. The First about rich vocations with 74 Priests, 9 deacons, 2 brothers, 154 students in Training periods: 54 seminarians, 21 novices, 50 philosophical students and 24 postulants. The second advantage is the content and vision of the Vincentian ministry with missionary attention to the poor in rural countries and ethnic minorities in Vietnam.
Finally, before the end of the Mass of Father Augustine Nguyen Huu Gia, CM, the former vice-provincial wished to thank the Bishops, the Superior General and General Council and all community.
Then Father Mathew Kallammakal, CM Counselor to the Visitors of the Asia-Pacific Region (APVC) on behalf Asia-Pacific Regional Visitors congratulated the new Province and the new Provincial. Victorio Marcelo, President of Adamson University, Philippines also congratulated and promised to help Vietnam in future training. And finally, their were words from the Rev. Tomaž Mavrič with the confreres of the new Province and the new Provincial.
Then Father Christian Marie Aimé Mauvais, Visitor of the Province of France, which was the mother province of Vietnam congratulated the new Province and Provincial.
Finally, the new Provincial, on behalf of the entire Congregation, thanked everyone for this memorable celebration.
In addition to Mass, there were also meetings of the Superior General with all the students and their formators.
What follows is a video of the Mass and official ceremonies.