Vesak commemorated across Vietnam
The Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) hosted a grand ceremony in Hanoi on Tuesday to mark the 2562nd birth anniversary of Lord Buddha.
In his speech, Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh said Buddha's birthday celebration, also known as Vesak, is not only a major religious event for Buddhists in Vietnam but also a global cultural festival recognized by the UN General Assembly.
Vietnam consistently respects and safeguards people's freedom of religion and belief as well as maintains and upholds traditional values. Party organizations and administrations at all levels should ensure that religious practices conform with law to create a stable and healthy environment for the development of religions and beliefs, Mr. Binh noted.
In his message, the Sangha's Supreme Patriarch called on all Vietnamese Buddhists to make unceasing efforts in helping Buddhism to continue to play an important role in the great national unity bloc and national development and protection.
In the central city of Hue, Vesak was marked with charity programs. Nun Thich Nhu Minh said: Involvement in charity activities is one way to follow Buddha's teaching of loving-kindness and compassion. It also demonstrates our respect for Buddha.
Representatives of the Da Nang city Buddhist Sangha presented gifts to poor people and patients and provided health check-ups and medicine to residents in remote areas.
Thousands of people have received gifts. Philanthropists have joined hands to build houses for the disadvantaged, Venerable Thich Thong Dao told VOV.
The HCM city Buddhist Sangha held a ceremony to celebrate Lord Buddha's 2562nd birthday on Tuesday and delivered 1,000 gifts to poor people.