Holy See and Viet Nam advance bilateral relations
By Linda Bordoni
In a joint statement on Thursday, 27 July 2023, it was announced by the Vatican and by Viet Nam that a definitive agreement has been reached between the parties for the Holy See to have a Resident Papal Representative in Hanoi.
The announcement was made following the visit on the same day of Vietnamese President Vo Van Thuong who was received in private audience by Pope Francis.
The statement also said the President’s visit took place “on the basis of the 10th Session of the Joint Working Group between Viet Nam and the Holy See on 31 March 2023 in the Vatican, and with the desire to continue advancing bilateral relations.”
Thus, it continued, “the two sides officially announce that the Government of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam and the Holy See concluded the “Agreement on the Status of the Resident Papal Representative and the Office of the Resident Papal Representative in Viet Nam”.
Talks with Pope and meeting with Secretary of State
During the meeting between President Vo Van Thuong and Pope Francis, and then with Cardinal Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin, the parties expressed appreciation for the noteworthy progress in relations between Viet Nam and the Holy See, and for the positive contributions by the Catholic community of Viet Nam “so far”.
Confidence was expressed “that the Resident Papal Representative will fulfill the role and mandate given them by the Agreement and provide support to the Vietnamese Catholic community” that “inspired by the Magisterium of the Church,” will fulfill its vocation of “accompanying the nation” and contribute to the development of the country.
The Representative, the statement concluded, “will be a bridge to advance relations between Viet Nam and the Holy See.”