Vice Chairwoman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Thi Bich Ngoc has pledged that the capital will give more importance and continue its support to religious people.

The official made the remark while receiving a delegation of the Evangelical Church of Vietnam (North) and the Hanoi Committee for Catholic Solidarity who came to extend New Year greetings to capital leaders.

Hanoi has accelerated movements among religious people over the past time, Ngoc said, adding that the city has also prioritised economic development and building cultural life in residential areas in remote, far-flung, ethnic and religious regions.

Thanks to such programmes, local people have enjoyed better spiritual and cultural lives with the number of poor households dropping significantly, she noted.

Pastor Nguyen Huu Mac, head of the Evangelical Church of Vietnam (North), said the church has encouraged its followers to abide by guidelines and policies of the Party, State and the capital in particular.

Due to the timely support and encouragement of municipal authorities at all levels, the church has improved its operation, especially in socio-economic development and construction of cultural life in residential houses.

The Pastor voiced his hope to receive more assistance from the municipal leaders in various areas.

Priest Duong Phu Oanh, Vice President of the Committee for Solidarity of Vietnamese Catholics and President of its Hanoi chapter, said the committee was awarded the Labour Order, third class, last year.

The honour has mirrored efforts made by Catholics to the country’s construction and defence as well as the support of municipal leaders and localities to the Catholic community, especially in poverty reduction and building new-style rural areas, he said.

On behalf of more than 200,000 parishioners, Oanh pledged to continue accompanying the capital on the path of development.-VNA