Video: Cathedral overflows for Vietnamese Martyrs Mass in Melbourne

Sunday 13 November 2016

Media and Communications Office

Today St Patrick’s Cathedral in East Melbourne filled to overflowing, as Melbourne’s Vietnamese community came together for the annual Vietnamese Martyrs Mass.

Presiding today’s Mass was Bishop emeritus Micae Hoang Duc Oanh, formerly of the diocese of Kontum in Vietnam.

Many local and visiting Vietnamese clergy concelebrated the Mass with Bishop Oanh, who is visiting Australia.

The Vietnamese Martyrs (Các Thánh Tử đạo Việt Nam), also known as the Martyrs of Indochina, Martyrs of Tonkin, Annam, and Cochinchina, or Andrew Dung-Lac and Companions, were canonised by Pope John Paul II in 1988.

Their official memorial is on November 24 (although several of these saints have another memorial, since they were beatified and on the calendar prior to the canonisation of the group).

The Vatican estimates the number of Vietnamese martyrs at between 130,000 and 300,000. John Paul II decided to canonize those whose names are known and unknown, giving them a single feast day.

Today’s annual community Mass filled the cathedral with praise, prayer, joy, thanksgiving and, thanks to the assembled Vietnamese choirs, glorious music.

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