|Religious practice at Long Truong pagoda (photo: Ngoc Anh)
Tra Vinh province has nearly 380 religious establishments with 600,000 followers. There are 465 belief establishments worshipping village tutelaries, national heroes, ancestors, and the Mother Goddess.
Religious organizations support the local administration in patriotic emulation movements to strengthen religious and national unity. Dignitaries and religious followers comply with Party and State guidelines, policies, and laws in upholding the charter of their organization.
Superior Monk Thach Oai, Vice Chairman of the Association for the Solidarity of Patriotic Monks of Tra Vinh province and head of the Ong Met Pagoda, said: “The Association is a member of the Vietnam Fatherland Front in Tra Vinh Province. It is responsible for reminding Buddhist monks and followers to comply with Party guidelines, State policies, and the province’s socio-economic development policy. The Association operates under its regulations and charter within the framework of the laws and with the motto Dharma and socialism, taking care of Buddhist followers and Khmer people. Religious practices in Tra Vinh are free as long as they are accordance with the laws.”
|Rach Von church in Tieu Can district, Tra Vinh province (photo: Ngoc Anh)
In order to make sure religious followers understand Party guidelines, State policies, and laws, dignitaries and religious staff actively inform people and correct misinterpretations of the religious situation in the province.
Superior monk Thach Ut, Chairman of Tieu Can district’s Association for the Solidarity of Patriotic Monks and head of Ô Chhuc pagoda, said: “The Association promotes Khmer culture, education, and the movement to study and follow Ho Chi Minh’s moral example. Catholics and Buddhists unite and live in harmony. At Christmas we visit the Catholics. During the Chol Thnam Thmay festival they visit us. The Vietnamese nation is one. All ethnic groups unite with each other.”
Each year the Mass Mobilization Committee, the Fatherland Front, and relevant agencies organize communication programs to disseminate the State's laws and policies on religion, inform people of the "peaceful evolution" scheme of hostile forces, the situation at the borders, seas, and islands, and the social, economic, and cultural development in ethnic and religious areas.
Kim Hong Danh, a former official of Tra Vinh province's Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs, said: “It’s necessary to understand and communicate Party guidelines and State policies to ethnic people. Religious establishments abide by the laws concerning religion, the nation, and socialism. The lives of ethnic minorities in the province have improved. Policies on housing, residential land, production land, and vocational training have been effectively implemented.”
Tra Vinh province offers favorable conditions for religious establishments to organize annual ceremonies. Religions promote the spirit of national unity and send representatives to attend ceremonies of other religions.
Monk Kim Hoang Trung of Tra Cu district said:“The Khmer, Kinh, and Hoa people live in harmony. Followers of different religions treat each other well and equally.”
The policies of Tra Vinh province have made positive changes in the local religious life, strengthened the trust of dignitaries and monks, and contributed to political security, social order, and economic development.