The event organizers - the communication board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) and Sen Cong Joint Stock Company – announced the plan at a press conference held in Hanoi on May 21.

A press conference is held on May 21 to announce activities to mark Vu Lan festival.

Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) Executive Council Most Venerable Thich Gia Quang, who is also head of the communication board, said that the art program will be the 8th of its kind held over the last ten years.

In July, a pilgrimage "following the footsteps of Dien Bien soldiers" will be held, taking participants to visit the graves of soldiers who joined the Dien Bien Phu battlefield 70 years ago and offer incense to commemorate the heroic martyrs.

Within the framework of the program, financial support will be given to Vietnamese Heroic Mothers, and elderly people who live alone or in disadvantaged situations.

The program will fund about 450 million VND to build a canteen with a capacity of 160 students at Nam Ty primary school in Hua Thanh commune in Dien Bien district, Dien Bien province.

Vu Lan festival is celebrated annually on the 15th day of the seventh month in the lunar calendar.

The origin of the festival is explained by the legend of Maudgalyayana (known as Muc Kien Lien in Vietnam), a chief disciple of Sakyamuni Buddha, who was unable to alleviate the suffering of his mother in the realm of hungry ghosts.

He was told that the only way to deliver his mother from the pains of suffering is to rely upon the strength of monastics of all directions in their cultivation of meritorious virtues.

The merits could liberate the deceased from the three suffering realms and allow them to enjoy a life of abundance, good fortune, and longevity. Therefore, by observing the practice, all Buddhists can deliver their parents from the miseries of the three suffering realms.

From this, many Buddhist countries have developed their custom of offering food, clothing, and other items to hungry spirits in the seventh lunar month.

This festival has been widely celebrated in Vietnam to express respect, love, and honor towards parents.

Source: VNA