A delegation of the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Government’s Committee for Religious Affairs on May 23 visited dignitaries of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) on the occasion of Lord Buddha’s 2557th birthday.

Talking with the dignitaries, Deputy Minister of Home Affairs and head of the Committee for Religious Affairs Pham Dung acknowledged contributions made by Buddhism throughout the country’s long history.

As the largest religion in Vietnam, Buddhism has accompanied the Vietnamese nation for thousands of years, he said, expressing his hope that dignitaries, monks, nuns and Buddhist followers will continue building on the tradition of solidarity within the religion as well as with other religions and non-religious people, contributing to the national construction and defence.

Most Venerable Thich Thanh Nhieu, Permanent Vice President of the VBS Executive Council, briefed the delegation on the Sangha’s activities over the past time as well as its plans for the rest of the year.

He asked the ministry to help in the establishment of Buddhist executive boards at localities, especially those in the Northwestern region such as Son La, Lai Chau and Dien Bien which are home to a large number of followers.

On this occasion, the Most Venerable also called for help from the Committee for Religious Affairs in recognising VBS chapters overseas.

On those days, the nation has livened up with a broad range of activities to celebrate Lord Buddha’s birthday.

The Buddhist Sanghas in all cities and provinces held rituals and ceremonies for followers.

Authorities in many provinces and cities also visited local Buddhist Sanghas and pagodas on this occasion.-VNA