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People claiming to be “officials” entered a home where a priest was preparing a Mass on Easter Sunday and attempted to detain the priest. The group of more than 20 said they were there to take him to the Communist Party headquarters. The priest was protected by the church goers, who surrounded the priest, and demanded the “officials” show their identification, which they refused to do. After church goers contacted provincial officials, the group left the church and the mass continued. Vietnam is a Communist country where Christianity is often oppressed and Christians are sometimes persecuted, imprisoned, and harassed for their faith.

4/19/2017 Vietnam (UCA News) – Plainclothes “officials” in northwest Vietnam broke into a Catholic family’s home and attempted to take into custody a priest preparing to celebrate Easter Mass.

More than 20 men and women, who identified themselves as “local officials,” barged into the house where a visiting priest was to celebrate Easter for around 100 Catholics in the town of Muong Khuong, Lao Cai Province. Eyewitnesses said these “local officials” shouted and pushed people as they tried to take Father Peter Nguyen Dinh Thai from Lao Cai Parish to the local Communist Party headquarters.

Many Catholics including women surrounded and protected the priest. They asked the men to show their identification and the summons on the priest but the “officials” refused.

“I called provincial officials to tell them to intervene in the incident. Finally, the authorities left the house and Father Thai celebrated Easter Mass,” Father Joseph Nguyen Van Thanh, pastor of Lao Cai Parish, told ucanews.com.

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