At Phat Diem cathedral in the northern province of Ninh Binh, dignitaries and parishioners started preparing for Christmas Eve a month ago. Now it is welcoming large numbers of parishioners and tourists.

Christmas is an occasion for parishioners to gather and reunite with their families, to sing praise to the lord, and to offer each other love. This is also an opportunity for people to have fun and admire the beautiful Christmas scene.

Vietnam was one of the many destinations European evangelists arrived at in the 16th century. After over 400 years, Catholicism has increasingly developed to become the second largest religion in Vietnam after Buddhism.

As midnight nears, more people will flock to churches to pray for happiness or simply to celebrate a special festival./.