Scene at the ceremony recognising Tran Thuong Temple festival as national intangible heritage (Photo: VNA)

Ha Nam (VNA) –
Tran Thuong Temple’s food-distributing festival in the northern province of Ha Nam was officially recognised as national intangible heritage at a ceremony on February 10, the 14th day of the first lunar month.

Vice State President Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh joined leaders from ministries, agencies and Ha Nam province to attend the ceremony.

Holding historical, cultural, and spiritual values, the temple is dedicated to Tran Hung Dao (1228-1300), the Supreme Commander of Vietnam in the Tran Dynasty, who repelled three major Mongolian invasions in the 13th century.

It is located in Nhan Dao commune of Ly Nhan district, which was chosen by Tran Hung Dao as a food storage area to supply his army during the fight against the Mongolian invaders.

In honour of the past event, a food-distributing festival is held annually at the Tran Thuong Temple on the 14th day of the first lunar month.   

This year, about 150,000 food parcels that contained corn, soybeans, and rice – key staples produced by Ly Nhan residents – were handed out to participants across 37 locations.

The same day, a seal opening ceremony took place at the Tran Kings temple relic site in the northern province of Nam Dinh to pray for a new year of happiness and bumper harvest.

The ceremony re-enacted a custom dating back to the Tran Dynasty (1225-1400), when mandarins took out their seals after the Tet holiday, resuming administrative activities, including rewarding and conferring titles.

The event opened with a procession to take the seal from Co Trach temple to Thien Truong temple, where 14 kings of the Tran Dynasty are worshipped.

Following a short speech of a local official praising the great accomplishments of the Tran Dynasty, the seal opening ceremony was held solemnly in line with the traditional rites, with the participation of 120 Tuc Mac villagers from all walks of life.

The site was closed to visitors during the ceremony and then opened at 23:55 pm last night.

It has become a tradition for Vietnamese to come here to get a stamp in hope for good luck and happiness.

The lucky stamps have been distributed among visitors starting 5am on February 12.-VNA