The President highlighted contributions of Buddhist monks, nuns, and followers to the struggle for national liberation, construction and defense, as well as present patriotic emulation movements, including those on poverty reduction, new-style rural area building, environmental protection and COVID-19 prevention and control, among others.

State President Nguyen Xuan Phuc (right) presents flowers to the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha.

The VBS has seriously observed regulations on pandemic prevention and control, and contributed funds to the fight, he said, adding that thousands of Buddhist dignitaries, monks, nuns and followers have voluntarily joined the frontline of the pandemic combat.

The Party and the State always pay attention to religions and religious affairs, and have issued many relevant policies and laws that affirm religious followers form an integral part of the great national unity bloc, President Phuc stressed.

The President stressed that the Party and State have consistently implemented a policy on respecting and ensuring people's right to freedom of belief and religion, right to freedom of non-belief and religion, and guaranteeing that religious activities are practiced in accordance with the law.

On this occasion, the President asked ministries, agencies, local authorities and the Vietnam Fatherland Front to further implement the Party’s guidelines and policies, and the State’s law on religions.

On behalf of the Party and the State, President Phuc presented a first-class Independence Order to the VBS.

Most Venerable Thich Tri Quang, Deputy Patriarch of the VBS and head of the Executive Board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha in HCM City, delivered a message from the Patronage Council of the VBS, which called on all monks, nuns, disciples, and people to continue upholding the incarnation tradition of Vietnamese Buddhism, train themselves, and cultivate dignified spirituality.

They should also further promote the tradition of protecting the nation and the people, accompanying the nation of Vietnamese Buddhism, as well as consolidating national solidarity and international religious connections, the message reads.

The Sangha should also take care of the overseas Vietnamese Buddhist community, and through them, introduce the Vietnamese history, culture and people to international friends to help the country maintain peace, stability and protect Vietnam’s sovereignty.

The ceremony was held in Hanoi and connected with 63 cities and provinces across the country.

Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue also sent banquets of flowers to the VBS.

Source: VNA