Vietnam’s hardworking and entrepreneurial people have spurred successful economic growth in the past decade. While the main cities are booming (Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Danang), poverty prevails in the provinces. In recent years, there are gradual signs of relaxation in the enforcement of laws relating to religion. We see a cautious openness to evangelism, church planting and the presence of foreigners.
Outreach opportunities abound. The younger generation is eager to learn the English language and professional skills. They do not carry the historical baggage of their parents’ generation. A good life and a secure future matter a lot to them. Vietnam is in a time of transition moving from an age of ideology to technology and from idealism to materialism.
By God’s grace and help, our mission is to plant the Diocese of Vietnam and for it to be officially recognized by the Vietnamese government.
We aim to plant ten congregations in the major cities of Vietnam, and for them to grow into parishes led by indigenous clergy & lay leadership and with stable financial self-support.
The last known official Anglican presence in Vietnam was St Christopher’s Church at Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City). The church was closed down because of the enforced departure of missionaries in 1975 when the Vietnam War ended and Communist rule began in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
Deanery work in Vietnam became active in the 1990s under the leadership of Bishop Moses Tay. This set an important foundation for subsequent bishops, Bishop John Chew and Bishop Rennis Ponniah, and the successive Deans to grow and expand the work in Vietnam.
There are presently two missionary congregations, led by two indigenous clergymen.
1. Church of Christ Our Hope: This congregation at Ho Chi Minh City started in December 2009. It is a community of 50 people, reaching out to families and university students and active in missions and community care.
2. Church of The True Light: This congregation at Hanoi started in November 2008 as Citylight Church. In August 2012, the church was renamed Church of The True Light when it came under the Deanery of Vietnam. It is a community of 80 people, with regular outreach to families through community care and also to university students through the teaching of English.
ABBA English Centre was set up in August 2009 by St Andrew’s Cathedral for the purpose of teaching English to Vietnamese youths. Every year, during the summer school holidays in June/July, about 30 Vietnamese students would come to Singapore for the ABBA English Summer Camp for the purpose of learning English learning as well as getting exposed to a different culture. ABBA has been an effective platform in supporting church planting work at Hanoi, sharing a symbiotic relationship with the Church of The True Light.
How can you be involved?
1. PRAY fervently for opportunities to preach the gospel & for the church to grow in spiritual maturity & leadership strength;
2. TEACH English to youths and university students for a period of 3 to 12 months.
3. COME to Singapore to interact and teach English at ABBA English Summer Camp in June/July
4. TRAIN adults in professional skills & knowledge, , for example, in Business & Management, Counselling, etc.
5. BRING a mission team to teach English at ABBA English centre & in the local schools.
6. GIVE towards financial support for our gospel work at Vietnam, especially in land purchase.