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Vietnamese Catholics bury aborted fetuses
By reporter, Hue City (December 29, 2010)
Vietnamese Catholics bury aborted fetuses thumbnail

Catholics from Vietnam's central provinces have been burying thousands of aborted fetuses for nearly two decades out of respect for life.

"We want to raise awareness of respect for life that God makes among local people, especially mothers," said John Baptist Truong Van Nang.

The father of six said local women who were raped or have unwanted pregnancies turn to abortions. Some unwed women and college students also resort to abortions because they fear rejection from their families or face dismissal from their jobs.

Nang said that he has started doing this since 1992 and has been burying four-10 fetuses a day.

The day after Christmas, Nang placed 15 aborted fetuses into four clay pots and placed them under the altar at home. He offered incense while his family prayed for the fetuses. The next day he took the pots to a local cemetery and buried them.

Some local volunteers collect aborted fetuses from state-run hospitals and private clinics for me to bury, he said.

Another volunteer, who asked not to be named, said her organization admires young people who help collect aborted fetuses from public gardens and bury them at local cemeteries.

She said volunteers visit hospitals and clinics to discourage pregnant women from having an abortion. Each year 50-60 pregnant women are given free accommodation and food at Church-run houses to carry on with their pregnancy.

About 100 people including non-Catholic women on Dec. 28 attended a special Mass held at a local cemetery for fetuses, to mark the Feast of the Holy Innocents.

Since 1992, about 43,000 aborted fetuses were buried at three cemeteries in the provinces of Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue, according to local Church records.

Vietnam law allows abortion at hospitals to control population growth.

Related reports
Vietnam Church holds citywide Masses for life
Caritas Vietnam to intensify pro-life work

Posted on 29 Dec 2010

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