Ordinations to the Priesthood in the Salesian Province of Vietnam
Xuan Hiep, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, 01 August 2020 -- On Saturday 01 August 2020, at 8 am, in the church of Don Bosco Xuan Hiep parish, the Archbishop of Sai Gon Archdiocese, Joseph Nguyen Nang, presided at the mass and the rites of ordination to the priesthood for four Salesian deacons of Vietnam province: Joseph Dinh Thanh Dat, Joseph Pham Thai Son, Peter Duong Hai Van and Fracis of Assisi K’Vuong.
Because of some restrictions issued by the government and also the archdiocese 2 days before, only some Salesians and a limited number of the candidates’ relatives were allowed to attend the mass.
In his words after the entrance song, Archbishop Joseph said: “We gather here together with the province, parents and relatives of the candidates to thank God because He gave us the four brothers consecrated in sacred priesthood to serve Him. We pray God to grant them abundance of grace of the Holy Spirit to make them become another Jesus, the Supreme Shepherd in this world and to serve the Church according to the spirituality and charism of Don Bosco.”
In his homily the Archbishop reminded the four candidates that when they celebrated the sacraments and the liturgy, they represented not only for the people of God but also the whole world and they had to remember that they were chosen from among the human race and lifted up to represent them to serve God. He also reminded the candidates that when celebrating the mystery of the death and resurrection of Jesus they had to try to master their bodies from vices and live in new life. He encouraged them to always fulfil the duties of Christ the supreme priest in genuine charity, not seeking anything for themselves but following what belongs to Christ. They had the duty to unite all Christians to be one family and to guide them to the Father through the Son and in the Holy Spirit. He reminded them to always imitate Jesus the Good Shepherd.
Before the concluding prayer, Fr. Provincial represented the province and the newly ordained priests to express gratitude to the Archbishop, to parents of the new priests and to everyone.
In his last words, the Archbishop congratulated the newly ordained priests and shared with everyone, especially with the new priests, his reflections about priests in the time of Covid-19: the priest is the one who has the ability to receive surprises from God. He is flexible to rules and prepared plans in order to be ready to receive God’s plans. God’s will and plans always have surprises which are beyond our predictions and thoughts. The Archbishop called them the batch of priests of Covid time and so they had to be readier to receive God’s will in the future for them and for God’s people. He added: God’s shepherds have to listen to the voice and cries of poor and suffering people, and be ready to take risks to serve people in need, even to the point of losing one's life.
We continue to pray for the four newly ordained priests so that they might become Jesus for God’s people and Don Bosco for young people in their mission.