.Take 10 (Click the number for info of entire trip)
You may not see anything interested in this photo. But I do. This is a Sunday Mass in Chong Kneas Floating Church over Tonle Sap Great Lake.
In the past, I had chances to attend the Sunday mass at the basilica of La Vang (Quang Tri, Vietnam), at St. Joseph's Cathedral in Wang Fujing (Beijing, China), at Notre Dame Cathedral (Saigon, Vietnam), at the Cathedral of St. Joseph (Hanoi, Vietnam), at Saint Joseph's Oratory of Mount Royal (Montreal, Canada), at Santa Rosa de Lima Church Muzquiz (Coahuila, Mexico), and at some other most deferential and solemn churches. But it is the mass of Fourth Sunday of Lent I attended at Chong Kneas floating church that I felt a complete communion.
Here they come to share their misery with God, to chant and praise the glory of God, and to ask for being forgiven and for meal as the way children would ask their parent, “Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Chong Kneas Catholic believers don’t pray to be rich or to be given spare food. They only wish to escape the hunger. They ask to be able to survive. They know their misery is endless. What they pray is to let them have a short break. Taking the dilemma of destiny, they don’t blame. "I confess that I have sinned through my own fault, in my thoughts and in my words, in what I have done, and in what I have failed to do.”
These Vietnamese residents said their prayers in Khmer—the language that the Indonesian priest used to communicate with them. Year after year, many Vietnamese seminarists have been ordained around the world but no Vietnamese catholic priest yet to volunteer to this dangerous and inconvenient corner of the planet so far. In my hometown Houston alone, I saw many priests driving their $50K luxury cars and many of them must share the limited apostolic work in a same parish. None of them can give up the wonderful post. If Chong Kneas village still need a shepherd, that’s God problem to hire one, not theirs.
Critiques | Translate
michiels (4170) 2007-05-22 5:48
A photo you can only take ! We as a tourist can never do that, it would disturb so much. So thanks to share it with us. I like the soft light coming through the windows. Nice photo !!
nicol_g (859) 2007-05-22 16:58
You've been there, Thanh, down, between them - your picture (point of view) shows it. That's what I like best...
eugeneahn (298) 2007-05-23 2:48
Intruiguing image. I've never seen a floating church, much less the inside of one. By offering an image of the inside, I am left to create a picture of the outside with my mind. Photographs that turn their viewers into photographers are pretty powerful. Thanks.
Richard1 (0) 2007-05-23 8:10
I agree to a certain extent. American priests have a difficult time in their desire to serve in impoverished countries. Being Catholic and an alter boy in a border city, El Paso. I had the opportunity to meet many South American priests who truly were doing God's work in the tropical jungles of Central and South America. Nearly all had committed their life to poverty and in serving their fellow man.
As always, excellent photograph.
- Copyright: Ngy Thanh (ngythanh) (8540)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2007-03-18
- Categories: Daily Life, Ceremony
- Camera: Canon EOS 20D, Canon EF 16-35mm F/2.8L-USM, SanDisk Ultra II 2Gg
- Exposure: f/4.5, 1/80 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Theme(s): The Floating Misery, A quick return to Chong Kneas [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2007-05-22 3:29