Showing posts from January, 2018

When Buddhists engaged

      Although the recent  opening of the first pontifical university in Vietnam is certainly a reason for hope, the Indochinese people's republic remains a country where Catholics are not free to practice their religion, and are subject to many restrictions imposed by the state. A new  religious practices act, that hopefully won't be even more oppressive, is due in 2016; but since the reunification of the country under Communist rule in 1975, the law has required  religious groups to obtain a government permission to gather, and forced Catholic priests to undergo state reeducation programs. Of course, that hasn't always been the case. From the end of the 19th century to 1940, when the Japanese occupied the region, French Indochina, even though it was ruled by the enfants of the Revolution,  had actually been  a Catholic bastion  in the continent; and after the war the short lived Republic of South Vietnam was home to a great number of devout Catholics. Many, and t