Vietnamese Martyrs Feast Day November 24th

The Vatican estimates the number of Vietnamese martyrs at between 130,000 and 300,000 were killed. Pope John Paul II decided to canonize those whose names are known and unknown, giving them a single feast day.

The Vietnamese Martyrs fall into several groupings, those of the Dominican and Jesuit missionary era of the (17th century) and those killed in the Christian persecutions of the 19th century. A representative sample of 117 martyrs — including 96 Vietnamese, 11 Spanish Dominicans, and 10 French members of the Paris Foreign Missions Society (Missions Etrangères de Paris) — were beatified on four separate occasions:

The tortures these individuals underwent are considered by the Vatican to be among the worst in the history of Christian martyrdom. The torturers hacked off limbs joint by joint, tore flesh with red hot tongs, and used drugs to enslave the minds of the victims. Christians at the time were branded on the face with the hieroglyphics 道, for heterodox doctrine, while their families and villages were destroyed.

List of names of the Vietnamese Martyrs

  • Agnes Le Thi Thanh
  • Andrew Dung-Lac An Tran
  • Andrew Thong Kim Nguyen
  • Andrew Trong Van Tram
  • Andrew Tuong
  • Anthony Dich Nguyen
  • Anthony Quynh Nam
  • Augustine Huy Viet Phan
  • Augustine Moi Van Nguyen
  • Augustin Schoeffer
  • Bernard Due Van Vo
  • Dominic Hanh Van Nguyen
  • Dominic Henares, a Dominican bishop from Spain
  • Dominic Nicholas Dat Dinh
  • Dominic Trach Doai
  • Dominic Uy Van Bui
  • Dominic Xuyen Van Nguyen
  • Dominic Kham Trong Pham
  • Dominic Tran Duy Ninh
  • Dominic Cam
  • Dominic Huyen
  • Dominic Toai
  • Dominic Mau
  • Dominic Nhi
  • Dominic Nguyen
  • Dominic Mao
  • Emmanuel Trieu Van Nguyen
  • Francis Chieu Van Do
  • Francis Gil de Frederich
  • Francis Isidore Gagelin
  • Francis Jaccard
  • Francis Trung Von Tran
  • Francis Xavier Can Nguyen
  • Ignatius Delgado y Cebrián
  • Jacinto (Hyacinth) Casteñeda, a Dominican
  • James Nam
  • Jerome Hermosilla
  • John Baptist Con
  • John Charles Cornay
  • John Dat
  • John Hoan Trinh Doan
  • Jean Louis Bonnard
  • John Thanh Van Dinh
  • José María Díaz Sanjurjo
  • Joseph Canh Luang Hoang
  • Joseph Fernandez
  • Joseph Hien Quang Do
  • Joseph Khang Duy Nguyen
  • Joseph Luu Van Nguyen
  • Joseph Marchand
  • Joseph Nghi Kim
  • Joseph Thi Dang Le
  • Joseph Uyen Dinh Nguyen
  • Joseph Vien Dinh Dang
  • Joseph Khang, a local doctor
  • Joseph Tuc
  • Joseph Tuan Van Tran
  • Lawrence Ngon
  • Lawrence Huong Van Nguyen
  • Luke Loan Ba Vu
  • Luke Thin Viet Pham
  • Martin Tho
  • Martin Tinh Duc Ta
  • Matthew Alonzo Leziniana
  • Matthew Dac Phuong Nguyen
  • Matthew Gam Van Le
  • Melchor Garcia Sampedro
  • Michael Hy Ho-Dinh
  • Michael My Huy Nguyen
  • Nicholas Thé Duc Bui
  • Paul Hanh
  • Paul Khoan Khan Pham
  • Paul Loc Van Le
  • Paul Tinh Bao Le
  • Paul Tong Buong
  • Paul Duong
  • Peter Tuan
  • Peter Dung Van Dinh
  • Peter Da
  • Peter Duong Van Troung
  • Peter Francis Néron
  • Peter Hieu Van Nguyen
  • Peter Quy Cong Doan
  • Peter Thi Van Truong Pham
  • Peter Tuan Ba Nguyen, a fisherman
  • Peter Tuy Le
  • Peter Van Van Doan
  • Philip Minh Van Phan
  • Pierre Borie, Mission Estranger de Paris
  • Simon Hoa Dac Phan
  • Stephen Theodore Cuenot, a bishop
  • Stephen Vinh
  • Théophane Vénard
  • Thomas De Van Nguyen
  • Thomas Du Viet Dinh
  • Thomas Thien Tran
  • Thomas Toan
  • Thomas Khuong
  • Valentine Berriochoa
  • Vincent Liem the Nguyen
  • Vincent Duong
  • Vincent Tuong, a local judge
  • Vincent Yen Do

The End…….

Jesus said, “All that you see here, the days will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down.”

We are approaching the end of the liturgical calendar. December 1st will be the first day of the new liturgical year. At the end of the year, the Church reminds us of conflicts and destructions in the world.

I remember my own ending moments a few weeks ago when I took too much cough medicine. I thought I was dying. My heartbeat raised up. The world around me was spinning. My eyes could not concentrate and read. I thought I was standing in front of death, the ending of my life. I had a little worry. Who would say Masses for me? What happened to all my plans?

My own death verses to the death of the whole world. Today the Gospel invites us to reflect on the incidents and realities NOW. We need to look around and pray to see, to judge and to act appropriately and prophetically.

I see the Mother Earth is crying for help because the climate change heats up the glope.

Ms. Greta Thunberg, 16 years old, stated, “The climate and ecological emergency is right here, right now. But it has only just begun, it will get worse. 420 gigatons of CO2 left to emit on January 1st, 2018 to have a 67 percent chance of staying below 1.5 degrees of global temperature rise. And now that figure is already down to less than 360 gigatons. Our house is on fire, I am here to say our house is on fire. According to the IPCC, we are less than 12 years away from not being able to undo our mistakes.

Jesus said, “By your perseverance, you will secure your lives.” How do we prepare for our eternal life? We cannot sit here to wait for death to come and destroy us. We should be active and alert to respond to the life that God has given us.

Ms. Greta Thunberg said, “This is the year 2019. This is not the time and place for dreams. This is the time to wake up. This is a moment in history where we need to be wide awake. You must not gamble your children’s future on the flip of a coin. Instead, you must unite behind the science. You must take action. You must do the impossible. Because giving up can never ever be an option.

  • Fr. Tat

Happy Birthday To The Redemptorists

November 9th, 1732 – 2019

St. Alphonsus Liguori and his first companions began the Redemptorists in response to the needs of those on the periphery of the Church and society, “the most abandoned, especially the poor.” Starting with the rural residents of 18th century Scala, Naples, the Redemptorists have continually sought to bring the joy of the gospel to all with whom they minister. The priests and brothers of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer seek to build communities of conversion wherein people can encounter the plentiful redemption offered through Christ. While preaching Christ, the Redemptorists rely on and encourage devotion to Mary, our Mother of Perpetual Help. She is  a mother of mercy and powerful intercession, pointing her devotees to life through her Son and the mysteries of his life, death, and resurrection.

As a new pastor at St. Gerard Majella Church, I would like to use this time and opportunity to journey side by side with all of you, especially the poor and the most abandoned.

Even though I cannot do everything to “bring back” the old St. Gerard Majella Church, I believe God continues to bless us all with surprises and blessings to build this church as a place of worship, family and community of love, peace and unity.

As the Redemptorists in the whole world celebrate our 287th birthday, I, a Redemptorist missionary, would like to dedicate one more time to renew my mission spirit to follow the example of Jesus Christ, the Redeemer, by preaching the Good News to the poor and most abandoned here in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

“Strong in faith, rejoicing in hope, burning with charity, on fire with zeal, in humility of heart and persevering in prayer, Redemptorists as apostolic men and genuine disciples of Saint Alphonsus follow Christ the Redeemer with hearts full of joy; denying themselves and always ready to undertake what is demanding, they share in the mystery of Christ and proclaim it in Gospel simplicity of life and language, that they may bring to people plentiful redemption.” (Constitution 20)

I would like to invite you to help me for the next four years to reach out to more people who need God’s redemption now and here. It is my privilege and honor to be here and accompany with ALL of you in faith.

In Christ our Redeemer,
Fr. Tat Hoang, C.Ss.R.

 

Teach Your Children To Use GPS

After Mass today, have a conversation with your children, asking, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” After a few moments of discussion, ask, “Who do you think God wants you to be when you grow up?” Emphasize to your children that God has a specific plan in mind for them, and that following God’s plan is the surest way to happiness. Every life decision – which college to attend, whom to date, which job to pursue, whether to enter seminary, whom to marry – should be undertaken only after praying for God’s guidance. In other words, encourage kids to navigate life using GPS – God’s Positioning System.

How Parent’s Can Nurture Vocations:

Set an example. Model discipleship and a loving marriage to your children.

Seek role models. Befriend priests, sisters, and brothers and invite them to your home.

Look to scripture. Read and discuss the Bible stories of Mary’s response to God (Luke 1:26-39), and Jesus calling the Apostles (Mt 4:18-22).

Pray for the future. Pray aloud that your children will follow Jesus and remain open to holy marriage, priesthood, and religious life.

If your child does not express interest in the priesthood or religious life, be supportive. The best thing you can say is, “Whatever God wants for you, I want for you, too. Just keep praying to discover His will for your life.”

 

26th Sunday of Ordinary Time

A HALF CUP OF INSPIRATION WITH FR. STEVE NYL, C.SS.R.:

“We shall not cease from exploration. And the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” These words of T.S. Eliot speak to my experience whenever I arrive to minister in a new place. I have been in Baton Rouge a little less than 3 weeks at this writing, but already have family and friends asking what it’s like here. I usually just tell them that I don’t know because I’m in process of figuring it out.

For me a ministry location isn’t so much defined by the place as much as by the people. And so it takes time for me to come to know all of you and you to get to know me. It is in relationship with one another, and together in relationship with the Lord, that we come to truly know how to answer the question. So let me briefly introduce myself: I am Fr. Steve Nyl, a Redemptorist for 22 years and ordained a priest for 18 years. I was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and grew up on a dairy farm. Following high school I worked in a factory for four years before furthering my education. Then I taught middle and high school for 12 years. Thinking I had set the course for my life, God stepped in one day out of the blue and changed everything. Following his call (eventually), I entered formation with the Redemptorists. have served in Denver, Colorado, Whittier, California (outside of Los Angeles) and Minneapolis, Minnesota. Now I am here in Baton Rouge. Thanks to those I have met who have made me feel so welcome. And I look forward to meeting you all in the upcoming days.

24th Sunday of Ordinary Time

A HALF CUP OF INSPIRATION WITH FR. TAT:

While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him, and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son, embraced him and kissed him. (Luke 15:1-32)

When was the last time you felt the love of your own father or mother or your God like the merciful father in the parable this week? The father was waiting and longing to see his youngest son to come back. He might sit outside and imagine the image of the son to return “home.” It seemed that he could not live with out his son. He patiently waited and prayed for his own son to unite with the family.

If you are a parent, when was the last time you longed and prayed for your own child to come home with you? This question touches many hearts of parents. During the discussion of the group “The Word of God”, one person was touched by the question raised: What do wish to do to finish your project of your life here on earth? She thought and shared, “I wish and pray that all my children and grandchildren will be guided by God to stay away from all temptations and to go to church.” She shared in mixed tears of joy and fear.

Our God is the Good God, who always forgives us and loves us no matter what we did. In the parable, the father did not waste a second to ask his youngest son what he did with his money and time. “He ran to his son, embraced him and kissed him.”God is merciful, compassionate and forgiving. It depends on us to stand up, trust and return to our loving God or not.

I wish and pray that the Church also immitates from God to be able to open our hearts to embrace all types of people no matter what they said or did in public polictically and relationally. Let us overcome our own moral, devotional and legal prejudices in order to welcome and reconcile one another in our country, community and family.

– Fr. Tat Hoang, C.Ss.R.

23rd Sunday of Ordinary Time

A HALF CUP OF INSPIRATION WITH FR. TAT:

“If anyone comes to me without hating his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me
cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:25-33)

One of the comments I’ve received when I moved to St. Gerard’s in Baton Rouge to work for the next four years is “Fr. Tat, you will be close to your family. You can go to New Orleans every week to visit your Mom and your family.” That is true and not true.

It is true because yes, it is much more convinient to drive home to see Mommy in New Orleans. It takes me only one hour and 30 minutes. I will enjoy Mom’s food more easily compared with the last times when I stationed in Chicago and New York City.

But it is not true because I am a Redemptorist missionary. I belong to everyone. Wherever I am sent, I call it home for myself. Every parishioner is part of my family. I cannot go “home” to see my Mom whenever I want to. My Mom has sacrificed me for God and God’s people. She’s offered me to God to serve the Church since I entered into the Redemptorist formation in 1998.

The most difficult cross for those who want to follow Jesus is not about the cross of family but the cross of their own. Mom, Dad and family may pass on. But our own cross never goes away. It stays with us until we die. The late Vietnamese Cardinal Francis Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan wrote in Road of Hope, “If you do not give up your own self, you will eventually collect everything you gave up back to yourself.”

Who wants to become Jesus’ disciple? To follow Jesus we need to dedicate our whole life and intention. There is no distraction. There is no “maybe” or “50-50” or “one day per week”. It takes daily practices and discipline. We do not need to go to seminary or convent to become Jesus’ disciples. You can be a great disciple of Jesus where you are and with the people you live and work. Be generous and grateful to all. May we all believe in Jesus and follow him.

– Fr. Tat Hoang, C.Ss.R.

22nd Sunday of Ordinary Time

A HALF CUP OF INSPIRATION WITH Fr. TAT

My child, conduct your affairs with humility,  and you will be loved more than a giver of gifts. Humble yourself the more, the greater you are, and you will find favor with God. (Sirach 3:17-18)

Happy Labor Day Holiday to all!

Labor day is a holy day. It is a sacred day. And I hope everyone has a chance to rest and to celebrate with your families, loved ones and friends. Working is necessary and essential in our lives. St. Paul said, “Those who do not work should not eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10). However, resting is also important for our health, happiness and holiness. “God rested on the seventh day” (Genesis 2:2).

The book of Sirach taught us about the outcomes of the humility of our activities, works and relationships. If we conduct our affairs with humility and gratitude, we will be loved more than a giver of gifts. A humble person will be great and find favor with God.

Many times we work and work for the sake of survival and temporary security. Some don’t even find joy and meaning in what they are doing. Saint Alphonsus said, “If you can find a right vocation for yourself, you will have eternal happiness.”

I am so glad to “work” at St. Gerard Majella community. I felt at home and happy here when I arrived. I felt a warm welcome like my own sisters and brothers. I do not feel that I am “working”. I feel like I just “live out” my call, my life and God’s mission with the people that God has sent to me everyday. I enjoy it very much.

I pray and wish that God continuously blesses all the workers: Constructors, doctors, nurses, scientists, teachers, janitors, bus drivers, bookkeepers, employers and employees, farmers, first responders, students, mothers and fathers. Because of them, we are here today.

I personally thank all parishioners of St. Gerard’s, especially ushers, altar servers, lectors, parish and finance councils, secretary, bookkeeper, groundskeeper, our cook and cleaners, for working very hard to sustain our community. May we all find joy, meaning and blessing in all things we do.

Fr. Tat Hoang, C.Ss.R.