Trích từ Dân Chúa
VNUSA Call to Action
VietCatholic News (Thứ Bảy 12/01/2008)
While the peaceful protests of Catholics in Hanoi continue, Vietnamese Catholics in America are called to take action against the Vietnamese authorities.
Starting today, VietCatholic News Agency initiates a campaign to call on every Vietnamese-American Catholics in the United States to stand in communion and solidarity with their fellow Vietnamese Catholic faithful in Hanoi.
The main purpose of this campaign is asking the U.S. government to put more pressure on the Vietnamese government, and ask this country to honor and comply with its own laws and regulations by immediately returning all confiscated Church properties to the Vietnamese Catholic Church and respecting its citizens’ rights as far as freedom of worship and freedom of religion are concerned, and more importantly put Vietnam back in the CPC (Countries of Particular Concerned) List.
Each Vietnamese-American Catholic here in the United states is invited to write, fax, or send a Letter either by mail or email directly to their elected officials in the United States Congress, which includes two Senators and one Representative in each state, and even to the President of the United States (if they wish).
A sample Letter was drafted and disseminated to all Vietnamese-American Catholics via VietCatholic’s website.
The Letter acknowledges that:
“Since becoming a member of the World Trade Organization and an unofficial observer of the United Nations, the Communist government of Vietnam has relentlessly abuse its human rights' record, and recently implemented numerous inhumane measures to restrict the freedom of worship and religious rights of its citizens everywhere, especially at Thai Ha parish, and remote villages such as Son La and other provinces.”
As a matter of fact, Vietnam has rudely defy the International Laws on Human Rights, and seriously has no respect whatsoever for the freedom of speech, religion and worship, even though these legitimate rights are mandated in its own Constitution dated April 15, 1992 and other state-issued legislations.
Being a member of several international organizations, Vietnam can not distant itself from the world communities as America and the world can not and will not let this Communist country to act on its own course for ever despite its ongoing hardships, threats, tortures, and illegal arrests that this dictatorship government have relentlessly imposed on its innocent Catholics from Hanoi to other places throughout the country.
While other citizens of the world have witnessed so many great progresses in every societal and scientific aspect, the Vietnamese people unfortunately still suffer from “a rod of iron” type of rule where they are considered like dirt and unfairly treated by the Communist leaders of Vietnam.
The Bible has said: “Return to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and return to God what belongs to God” (Mark 12:17).
Will this be a good implication and a valuable lesson to all Vietnamese Communist leaders?
Absolutely not as said in the Letter:
“The Vietnamese Catholic Church had landholdings and properties, but the national, provincial, or municipal governments during the period of collectivization confiscated most of these. Allegations that Vietnamese authorities have destroyed churches, either to use property for some other purposes or to make worship more difficult, continue this day.”
As our late Pope John Paul II once said: “the claim to build a world without God has been shown to be an illusion.”
And that government will soon collapse as it was built on the foundations of the “fake” and “ignorant” truths. Then it comes to another question: “Will this injustice and unfair treatment continue for ever?”
We do not know yet, only time will tell, but if we are determined to act together now, positive results will come very soon as the Communist leaders will not let their own fates fall when the world communities take actions against them!
In the Instruction issued by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, it said: “More than ever, the Church intends to condemn abuses, injustices and attacks against freedom, whenever they occur and whoever commits them. She intends to struggle, by her own means, for the defense and advancement of the rights of mankind, especially the poor.”
Who is the Church if not us? If we do not fight for our brothers and sisters in Hanoi, Vietnam, then who will?
Let’s stand together, and stay hands-in-hands, hearts-in-hearts, minds-in-minds, and souls-in-souls with our fellow Vietnamese Catholics in Hanoi and in other places throughout Vietnam so that justice and freedom will prevail!
Over the past 32 years since the day Communists in Hanoi took over Saigon, we have left the country, and have been living, working, and acting as political refugees in this new and wonderful land of America, it is now time for all of us to come back in one roof under the guidance of our Vietnamese Catholic Bishops, stand in one place, unite in one voice, and act in one spirit: to ask the Vietnamese government to immediately return specified-Church properties and stop abusing our brothers and sisters there!
Please do not be afraid to speak loudly and to discuss openly about this issue and spread this peaceful fight to all our fellow Americans!
Concretely, we propose the fowllowing steps:
a. Please send this letter to your Senator/US Congress Man/Woman.
b. Or sens it by email to to your Senator/US Congress Man/Woman.
(c) To know the name and address of your Senator, please go to this Web page:
or at: http://www.senate.gov
(d) To To know the name and address of your Congressman or Congresswoman, please go to this Web page:
After sending this letter to 2 your Senators of your State and to the Congressman/woman of your District, please email to us at this address: VNUSACalltoAction@gmail.com . To let us know that you already took the action with the following information:
(a) Names of Senators and Congressman/woman that you sent the letter,
(b) The Date that you sent the letter;
With all those information and data, we will contact and act properly manner with the Senate and US Congress for concrete solutions.
May God Bless All of Us and sspecially Our Brothers and Sisters in Vietnam who are now still live under the pressure of the Communist Regime!
Paul Anh, Coordinator
VNUSA Call to Action
for VietCatholic Network
The Honorable ____________
House of Representatives / United States Senate
Washington, DC 20515 / 20510
Re: Request for the Return of Confiscated Church Properties to the Vietnamese Catholic Church
Dear Representative / Senator ____________:
I write to urge you to put pressure on the Communist government of Vietnam and ask them to return immediately all confiscated Church properties as well as release prisoners of conscience.
It is my view that since becoming a member of the World Trade Organization and an unofficial observer of the United Nations, the Communist government of Vietnam has relentlessly abuse its human rights' record, and recently implemented numerous inhumane measures to restrict the freedom of worship and religious rights of its citizens everywhere, especially at Thai Ha parish, and remote villages such as Son La and other provinces.
The Vietnamese Catholic Church had extensive landholdings and properties, but the national, provincial, or municipal governments during the period of collectivization confiscated most of these. Allegations that Vietnamese authorities have destroyed churches, either to use property for some other purposes or to make worship more difficult, continue this day.
As of right now, the Vietnamese Catholic Church does need the following properties returned immediately:
(1) The former Apostolic Delegate’s Office located at 42 Pho Nha Chung Street, Hanoi;
(2) The 47-acre Land that belongs to La Vang Pilgrimage Center which is now under the control of Quang Tri, Quang Nam, and Quang Ngai municipal provinces; and
(3) The former Pius X Grand Seminary (or Pius X Pontifical Academy) in Dalat province.
In its Constitution of 15 April 1992, Chapter 5, concerning the Fundamental Rights and Duties of the Citizen, specifically in Article 70, the Constitution mandates that:
“The citizen shall enjoy freedom of belief and of religion; he can follow any religion or follow none. All religions are equal before the law. The places of worship of all faiths and religions are protected by the law... ”
Directive No. 379/TTg stresses: “Places of worship borrowed by the authorities must be returned to the churches or their owners when their use is no longer justified. If the use of the land is not for the right purposes, then it must be returned to the churches. If the places of worship are being occupied by people, it is municipal government’s task in asking these habitants to leave the properties within specific time.”
Decree No. 26/1999/ND-CP emphasizes: “Church properties must be kept under the management of the state, and the state should not let these places of worships be transgressed.”
Ordinance No. 21/2004/PL-UBTVQH11 of June 18, 2004 regarding Religious Belief and Religious Organizations, Article 26 elaborates that: “The legal property of places of religious belief and of religious organizations is protected by law; any violation of this right is forbidden.”
Ironically, despite these said regulations issued by the Vietnamese government itself, and persistent request of the Bishops’ Council of the Vietnamese Catholic Church asking the Vietnamese authorities to return all confiscated Church properties, more specifically the above-mentioned properties, none of this has yet happened.
In recent days, thousands of Vietnamese Catholic faithful in the Archdiocese of Hanoi have conducted several peaceful light-candle sessions, and prayer vigils almost everyday in front of the former Apostolic Delegate’s Office, and the same with other Vietnamese faithful throughout the country with a hope that the Vietnamese government will soon honor their legitimate requests.
The above-mentioned properties are very much needed for the Vietnamese Catholic Church today and in the long run in her mission to evangelize, educate, and train all the Catholic faithful to become useful and productive citizens, to actively contribute to the overall development and protection of Vietnamese society as a whole.
Thus, in solidarity with those Vietnamese faithful, and as your active constituent, I urge you to work with your colleagues to either put Vietnam back in the CPC (Countries of Particular Concerned) list or ask the Vietnamese Government to immediately return the above-mentioned confiscated Church properties to the Vietnamese Catholic Church.
The Catholic faithful in Vietnam are very courageous and determined in their legitimate requests for the above-mentioned properties to be returned immediately to the Vietnamese Catholic Church by holding several peaceful prayer sessions throughout the day and this will indefinitely continue despite any threats or dangers imposed by local and municipal police forces.
As your constituent, I am worried that the Communist police forces may arrest, torture and execute these innocent and honorable Vietnamese Catholic faithful without mercy and justice, so I urge you and your colleagues to look into this matter as soon as possible, because this is the only way we can ensure freedom and democracy is in effect and working as our forefathers expect and entrust this mission to each and everyone of us.
Please kindly keep me updated on your actions via written correspondence.
State & Zip: ___________________
VNUSA Call to Action