Sunday, February 24, 2008
Seeing Hanoi at a Leisurely Pace - Hearing Mass at St. Joseph's, Hanoi
Day 8 started with a mass at St. Joseph's Cathedral (aka The Great Cathedral of Hanoi). Finally I caught this Cathedral open with a mass, albeit officiated in Vietnamese. I got in and found a packed church. I walked near altar and just stood by the side. The altar was decked with wall-to-wall stained glass. Though I couldn't understand what was being said, it gave me a sense of calm to witness the unifying power of religion, and it was even more calming to know that I have something in common with these Vietnamese. I was standing for an hour, but felt good after the mass.
St. Joseph's Cathedral (Nha Tho Lon). this photo only courtesy of Ms. Mary Ann Sullivan of www.bluffton.edu. The cathedral opened its doors in 1886 at the start of the colonial rule. It presently holds mass twice a day.
This is the Eye in the Sky!