VATICAN - “WITNESSES AND MISSIONARIES OF A FLOCK WHICH IS DISPERSED BUT STRONG IN FAITH” CARDINAL SEPE CLOSES MEETING FOR OVERSEAS VIETNAMESE CATHOLICS CONSIGNING THE MISSIONARY CROSS
Tuesday, 29 July 2003
Vatican City (Fides Service) – . This is an excerpt of the homily given by Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples during a solemn concelebration of Mass which he presided in St Peter’s Basilica on Sunday 27 July for the closing of a Meeting for Overseas Vietnamese Catholics. Some three thousand people – priests, religious men and women, young people, families – from 18 different countries took part in the Mass animated with typical Vietnamese music, musical instruments, hymns, and liturgical dancing.
The Mass on 27 July was the crowning moment of the four day meeting of faith – the first organised at the world level since the Diaspora. Promoted by the Office for the co-ordination of Pastoral Care for overseas Vietnamese Catholics set up by the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples and whose director is Mgr Dinh Duc Dao, the Meeting focussed on the theme “United to live and proclaim the Gospel”. At present more than 2 million Vietnamese live outside their homeland and of these 500,000 are Catholics.
. . “Nevertheless – he added - despite so much hardship you have kept strong and vigorous the faith received from your fathers>.
The Mass concluded with the solemn sending on mission and the consigning of the mission crucifix by Cardinal Sepe to representatives of the Vietnamese communities on the different continents: . SL (Fides Service 29/7/2003 EM lines 34 Words: 481)