Đại Hội Thánh Mẫu
Entrance to the 2007 Marian Days.
|Begins||1st Thursday in August|
|Location(s)||Carthage, Missouri, United States|
|Most recent||August 2–5, 2012[update]|
|Patron(s)||Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix|
The Marian Days (Vietnamese: Đại Hội Thánh Mẫu, officially các Ngày Thánh Mẫu) is the main festival and pilgrimage for Vietnamese American Roman Catholics. The annual event in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary has taken place the first weekend in August since 1978 on the 28-acre (110,000 m2) campus of the Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix in Carthage, Missouri. Tens of thousands of attendees come from throughout the United States, while non-Vietnamese locals and some visitors from Canada and Vietnam also attend.
The Congregation organized the inaugural Marian Days at its U.S. headquarters in 1978, in celebration of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Around 1,500 Vietnamese Catholics from the Carthage area participated.
Ordinarily, Marian Days takes place without major incidents. The Carthage Police Department and event organizers enforce rules against indecency and drug use. Gang members are banned from the event, after two gangs killed a man during a fight in 2003. In 2008, 17 pilgrims died in a bus crash en route from Houston to Carthage.
Around 60,000 attended the 34th annual Marian Days August 4–7, 2011. Presiders included Bishop Johnston and Bishop Emeritus Leibrecht of Springfield–Cape Girardeau, the local diocese; Bishop Tri Bửu Thiên of Cần Thơ; and Auxiliary Bishop Nguyễn Tấn Tước of Phú Cường.
Each day of Marian Days is highlighted by a large, outdoor Mass on the CMC grounds. The Marian Days offer opportunities for Reconciliation and prayer. Mass is celebrated by many priests and religious.
Pilgrims turn the surrounding area into a large campground, as many nearby residents allow pilgrims to erect tents on their lawns. Although the celebrations are centered around liturgy, they also feature a number of other events. Dioceses with large Vietnamese populations set up large tents to sell traditional Vietnamese food. Proceeds go to the parishes, orphanages, or a diocese in Vietnam such as Phú Cường. Other organizations, such as a local Knights of Columbus chapter, also serve food to pilgrims in tents. Each night, performers from Thúy Nga and other groups entertain the large crowds with both folk and popular Vietnamese music.
At the end of the Procession in honor of Our Lady of Fatima, two long firecrackers are lit, followed by the release of numerous balloons of all colors tied to two flags, one of blue and white, the Virgin Mary's colors, and the other of the Vietnamese flag before the country fell to communism. The flags fly off into the distance; addresses are written on them, so that whoever finds the flags can return them.
Notes and references
- Garcia, Angela (August 5, 2011). "Marian Days event in Carthage shows impressive turnout". Pittsburg, Kansas: KOAM-TV. Retrieved August 10, 2011. "Around 60,000 Vietnamese Roman Catholics travel to the campus of the Congregation of Mother Co-Redemptrix at this time of year."
- Using a title for the Blessed Virgin Mary in Vietnamese Catholicism, also used for female deities in various other Vietnamese religions.
- Rivera, John (August 10, 1998). "Vietnamese Catholics on Ozarks pilgrimage Festival: During Marian Days, the faithful honor the Virgin Mary and reunite with family and friends". The Baltimore Sun (Baltimore, Maryland: Tribune Company). Retrieved August 10, 2011.
- "Lược Sử Chi Dòng" [History of the Branch of the Congregation]. Carthage, Missouri: Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix, U.S. Assumption Province. March 11, 2008. Retrieved August 10, 2011.
- Redden, Susan (July 19, 2006). "Carthage police prepare for Asian gangs". The Joplin Globe (Joplin, Missouri: Community Newspaper Holdings). Retrieved August 10, 2011. "Members of Asian gangs were barred from the normally peaceful Marian Days event starting in 2004, after one man died in a fight between two gangs in 2003."
- Huỳnh, Đại; Mary Vuông; Anita Hassan; Dale Lezon (August 10, 2008). "Loved ones recall victims' strength and sacrifices". Houston Chronicle (Houston, Texas: Hearst Corporation). Retrieved August 11, 2008.
- Minh Thiện; Lê Minh (August 4, 2011). "Ngày Khai Mạc Thánh Mẫu XXXIV-2011" [Opening Day of Marian Days XXXIV-2011] (in Vietnamese). Carthage, Missouri: Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix, U.S. Assumption Province. Retrieved August 10, 2011.
- Vũ, Dưỡng Hưu (August 6, 2011). "Đại Hội Thánh Mẫu lần 34 tại Dòng Đồng Công – Missouri : Ngày thứ Ba" [34th Marian Days at the Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix – Missouri: Day 3] (in Vietnamese). Carthage, Missouri: Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix, U.S. Assumption Province. Retrieved August 10, 2011.
- Vũ, Dưỡng Hưu (August 7, 2011). "Đại Hội Thánh Mẫu lần 34 tại Dòng Đồng Công – Missouri : Ngày Bế Mạc" [34th Marian Days at the Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix – Missouri: Closing Day] (in Vietnamese). Carthage, Missouri: Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix, U.S. Assumption Province. Retrieved August 10, 2011.
- Westhoff, Andrea (August 5, 2011). "Local Catholics celebrate with pilgrims". The Carthage Press (Carthage, Missouri: GateHouse Media). Retrieved August 10, 2011. "The Knights of Columbus is a national Catholic men’s service organization. St. Ann’s chapter has been serving food at the festival for over 20 years and usually serves around 5,000 meals per year."
- "Ngày Thánh Mẫu 2011". Thúy Nga Online Forums. Thuy Nga. May 25, 2011. Retrieved August 10, 2011.
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