Beautiful Vietnam
Mang Lang Church is Phu Yen gem
  • | SGT | July 19, 2012 09:05 PM

Phu Yen Province is renowned for its many stunning beaches, splendid rock cliffs and magnificent mountains, but tourists looking for something unusual should visit Mang Lang Church in An Thach Commune, Tuy An District, about 35 kilometres north of Tuy Hoa City.

The church was built 130 years ago by French priest Joseph de la Cassagne who started erecting it in a paddy field in 1892. The building has experienced much change since that time, when there were many plants with purple pink blossoms called Mang Lang, from which the church takes its name.

 

Some people walk around Mang Lang Church in Phu Yen Province

After he died, parishioners buried him in the church in order that they can feel him close by.

The church has been renovated twice, in 1924 after a storm and in 1992 when the church celebrated a century. The church still retains its original Gothic architecture with bell towers on each side and a cross in the middle.

The church is equally appealing behind its walls. It has stained glass windows with the cross and other Christian images with yellow arches along the corridors that run down both sides of the building.

The combination of Eastern and Western architecture makes Mang Lang worth a visit and Catholics may want to peruse the documents about the life of Saint Andrew Phu Yen. His statue stands solemnly on a small hill in the church yard.

He was beatified in March 2000 by Pope John Paul II. Documents say he was publicly executed in July 1644 after a purge of Christians aged just 19, three years after he was baptized and 248 years before work began on the church.

The church’s name comes from a wild tree with big trunk, large groves, oval-shaped leaves and purple pink flowers which grow in An Thach Commune. They call that tree mang lang.

To reach Mang Lang Church, tourists just travel on National Road 1A to Chi Thanh T-junction in Tuy An District, then travel ahead for two kilometres, making a right turn to Ngan Son Bridge. From the bridge, tourists go on a road along Ky Lo River for one kilometer and they reach this treasured building.

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