Minister of Home Affairs receives Vatican Foreign Minister


Minister of Home Affairs Phạm Thị Thanh Trà received visiting Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, the Vatican's Secretary for Relations with States and International Organizations, in Hanoi on April 10.

At the reception

Joining the reception included Deputy Minister of the Home Affairs Ministry Vũ Chiến Thắng, Chairman of the Government Committee for Religious Affairs (GCRA) Vũ Hoài Bắc, and Vice Chairman of the GCRA Nguyễn Tiến Trọng.

Deputy Minister Vũ Chiến Thắng welcomes Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher

Accompanying with Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher included Archbishop Resident Representative of Vatican in Vietnam Marek Zalewski, and Archbishop President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Vietnam Joseph Nguyễn Năng.

Highlighting the diversity of religions in Vietnam, Minister Phạm Thị Thanh Trà said there are 16 religions, 36 religious organizations, and 27 million religious followers in Vietnam who account for 27% of the country’s population. Catholicism has about 7 million followers, ranking second in the number of followers in the country.

Minister Trà appreciated the contributions of Catholic followers to national development and defense while speaking highly of the role of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Vietnam in guiding the development of Catholicism in the country and instructing followers to lead a good secular and religious life.

The home affair minister also affirmed that Vietnam always pay respect and pursue a consistent policy on ensuring the freedom of beliefs and religions, as well as promote fine traditions and religious resources of religions, contributing to the national construction and defense and the development of the country.

The minister expressed her delight that relations between Vietnam and the Vatican have been growing and obtaining good results, describing the presence of the first Resident Papal Representative in Vietnam as a clear demonstration of the sound relations.

For his part, Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher took the chance to thank the home affairs minister for his visiting delegation, and expressed hope that the Catholicism in Vietnam would make more contributions for the development of the country.

The archbishop stated that the achievements obtained so far will open up new paths for the Catholic Church to continue affirming its presence in Vietnam and engaging more in health care, education, and social charities.

Posing for a group photo

Nguyên Hải