At 5:30 p.m., on March 2, 2019, more than a hundred people, including priests, religious, families, benefactors and friars gathered at the Annunciation Friary in Cu Chi, Vietnam for the dedication and blessing of a new formation house.
The Most Reverend Joseph NGUYỄN Tấn Tước, Bishop of Phú Cường, Vietnam, presided over the liturgy. Those concelebrating included the Minister General, Friar Marco TASCA; the Minister Provincial of the St. Joseph of Cupertino Province in the USA, Friar Victor ABEGG; the Assistant General for the Conventual Franciscan Federation (CFF) Friar Jude WINKLER, the Assistant General for the Federation of Asian Minors Conventual (FAMC) Friar Benedetto BAEK; and the Provincial Delegate for Vietnam, Friar Luke VU.
After the Mass, the friars offered a delicious meal to all the people present and provided entertainment.
The following day, Friar Marco TASCA celebrated Mass and talked to the postulants about the Order’s presences around the world. He also blessed a statue of St. Francis that was placed in front of the new postulancy house. In the afternoon, the Minister General, along with Friars Victor and Benedetto, spoke to all the friars in the south of Vietnam about the challenges of living our vocation as Franciscans in the world today.
On March 5, the Minister General and the Minister Provincial went to Van Mon, Vietnam, accompanied by Friars Benedetto, Luke and Ray MALLETT. While there, Friar Victor ABEGG blessed the new friary, which was named after St. Andrew DŨNG LẠC and Companion Martyrs.
On Ash Wednesday, March 6, the friars spent time visiting some of Van Mon’s Hansen’s disease patients. The friars also visited the Most Reverend Pierre NGUYỄN Văn Đệ, S.D.B., Bishop of Thái Bình, Vietnam, and had lunch at his house.
Later that evening, the Minister General and the Assistant General, Friar Benedetto BAEK, flew back to Rome, having completed their five-day, fraternal visit to Vietnam.
Friar Luke VU, Provincial Delegate