Spring festivals open nationwide

The Bai Dinh Pagoda Festival opened in Gia Vien district, Ninh Binh province on Thursday or the sixth day of the first lunar month.

Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh and Secretary of the provincial Party's Committee Nguyen Thi Thanh beat the drum to open the festival, which saw the participation of dignitaries from the Vietnam Buddhism Sangha and its provincial chapter, and thousands of pilgrims. Participants released doves and offered incense to pray for happiness and national development. The event also featured folk games and artistic programs. Addressing the event, Venerable Thich Thanh Nhieu, head of the Bai Dinh Pagoda and Vice Chairman of the Executive Council of the Vietnam Buddhist Shangha said: "The pagoda has been upgraded and expanded to promote the moral and cultural value of Buddhism, peace and happiness of the humankind, to pay gratitude to the predecessors and honor their contribution to national development.".

On the same day, the Huong (Perfume) pagoda festival opened in My Duc district on the outskirts of Hanoi. Most Venerable Thich Minh Hien, Head of the Huong pagoda, said My Duc district and the Management Board of the Huong pagoda are finalizing procedures to get the pagoda recognized as a special national relic site.

In Hoa Binh province, Muong ethnic minority people organized their "Going to the filed" festival to pray for a bumper crop.

Source: VOV5