Cardinal Van Thuan's Holiness

The process of beatification has begun for Vietnamese Cardinal Van Thuan who spent 13 years in prison for the crime of being a Catholic, and carries with him an almost transparent holiness.

His story is similar to the story of China’s Ignatius Cardinal Kung Pin Mei, who spent 30 years in prison for his faith, living the last part of his life in exile.

Cardinal Ignatius Kung Pin Mei, in exile

A little while back I wrote elsewhere:

Like the Magi, the Church has been traveling resolutely West, and it has nearly come full-circle; it is bringing new treasure from the East and up from Africa. There is almost a sense of completion to this.

Perhaps these courageous and faithful Christians out of Asia are meant to be the saints whose prayers help to speed our healing and our journey to wholeness.

About Elizabeth Scalia
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  • From Giants Baseball Territory

    Anchoress! I just LOVE Cardinal Kung and have his book signed with his “chop” in red ink. We’ve had priests and laity at our dining table who’ve been imprisoned by the Chinese communists. Thank you for posting about Cardinal Van Thuan. We have parishoners who lived through horrible things imposed on them: imprisonment, torture, work camps, exile, etc. in China. They have no time for this Chinese gov’t or the phony, state church there. Not after what they suffered for the real Bride of Christ on earth.

    What interesting timing too, for you to mention the Wise Men from the East! I’m just learning “Die heiligen drei Koenige uas Morgenland” by R. Strauss. Its a gorgeous piece, check it out on Youtube. Jessye Norman is “ok” but, the other video with Strass’ face on it is much better; the ever glorious Elizabeth Schwarzkopf. The orchestration is gorgeous!!! I love Strass voice in his orchestrations. Sorry to digress but, I was tickled by your Wise Men reference just when I’d translated the German tonight.

    By the way, what is the name of that great Chinese (or was he Taiwanese) who translated the book of dao? John something. I’m blanking on his name but love him too. Another wise man of the East.

  • J

    I remember reading a book written by a doctor (I think the name was dooley)about Vietnam. His description of what was done to the catholics in the country when the communists were attempting to take it over, is shocking.
    When I mentioned it to the hippies of the 60′s they claimed that he was lying and the stories were all catholic propaganda.

  • Victor

    Reading much of this post got me thinking that no matter how many priest or saints our Catholic church might obtain, “IT” will never make God any greater than He already is but don’t get me wrong cause we are made in His image and in that sense “IT” certainly does make U>S (usual sinners) a lot closer to meeting Him face to face if that’s at all possible and having said that I, me and myself must also remember that as far as any body cells know, He’s always been invisible to mortal men and woman.

    Would you agree with me Anchoress?

    I hear ya! Give me a little time to think about “IT” and I’ll let you know but remember Victor that a trillion year or so is but a moment for our Heavenly Father so please have a little patience with me. :)


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