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First Vietnamese Buddhist Temple Opens in Ireland


Vietnamese Buddhists in Ireland opened their first official temple on 7 May. Minh Tam Pagoda is located in the northeast of the capital Dublin. The opening ceremony was led by Thich Phuoc Hue, who is based at Tu Dam Tu temple in Birmingham, England. He will act as the visiting director of the Dublin temple.

At the opening ceremony, Thich Phuoc Hue extended his “warmest blessings to all of those people who worked in so many ways to deliver a truly proud moment for the Vietnamese Buddhist community in Ireland.” (RTE) Others in attendance included senior monastics from the international Buddhist community and Ireland’s minister of state for transport and for the environment, climate and communications, Jack Chambers.

“It is a privilege to share this happy day with so many who have worked tirelessly and made sacrifices to create this beautiful temple here in Coolock. The opening of the first-ever Vietnamese Buddhist temple here in Dublin is a momentous occasion, and is sure to have such a positive impact in this community.” said Chambers. “This new temple will serve as a hub for the growing Vietnamese Buddhist community in Dublin and in the wider region, providing a space for worship, meditation and reflection, as well as a temple for people to come together and continue to build that strong sense of community.” (Irish Independent)

There are an estimated 4,000 Vietnamese Buddhists in Ireland and about 10,000 Vietnamese people in the country. Early Vietnamese immigrants to the country included approximately 200 refugees who were admitted in 1979 as they fled the communist regime in Vietnam.

“Several senior members of the community here today left Vietnam in difficult times and faced a treacherous journey in search of refuge, and I see this temple as a shining example of the good that can result, and has resulted, from the arrival of this community more than 40 years ago,” noted Chambers. (Irish Independent)

Early refugees were housed by the Red Cross in centers in Blanchardstown and Swords, suburbs to the north of Dublin, before finding more permanent housing in Dublin and elsewhere in Ireland.

Chambers continued: “Not only is this a beacon of hope, this temple is a testament and tribute to the Vietnamese community who came then and arrived since and rallied together to build such a worthy spiritual and healing space for the Vietnamese, Irish, and indeed all Buddhists to share this day going forward.” (Irish Independent)

The temple is housed in what was once an industrial building, which was renovated at a cost of €400,000 (US$440,000). The site will host Buddhist services every Sunday as well as on holidays celebrated in the Vietnamese Buddhist calendar. The temple can accommodate up to 500 people.


“The opening of this temple is not just to save a significant event for the Vietnamese Buddhist community here in Dublin in the wider region, but also for the city as a whole,” said Chambers. “It represents a new addition to the rich tapestry of religious and cultural diversity that makes Dublin and indeed Ireland as such a vibrant and welcoming place.” (Irish Independent)

“It’s also an opportunity for the wider community to learn so much about the Buddhist faith to promote interfaith dialogue between many religions. Buddhism has much to teach all of us about compassion, wisdom and the interconnectedness of all things,” Chambers added. (Irish Independent)

Read more

Ireland’s first Vietnamese Buddhist Temple opens in Dublin (RTE)
Vietnamese Buddhists open their first Temple in Ireland (Irish Independent)
Vietnamese Buddhists celebrate May 7 opening of temple in Ireland (Malaysia Sun)

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