Fundraising for a future shrine on the Christ Cathedral Campus dedicated to Our Lady of La Vang continues to move forward, with donors pledging over $8 million to help with the construction for the shrine.
“This is a great project for the Vietnamese Community in Orange County,” said the Most Rev. Thanh Thai Nguyen, Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Orange. He spoke at an event held earlier this month at the Cultural Center to thank Vietnamese journalists for their coverage of the Diocese of Orange and the shrine’s development.
The Our Lady of La Vang Shrine will be constructed in the northeast section of the Christ Cathedral campus and it will honor a Marian apparition witnessed in the 18th century by Vietnamese Catholics fleeing persecution to the remote mountains of La Vang. It was there that the Virgin Mary, in a simple dress and a gold crown and holding a child, spoke words of love and comfort.
The shrine is being designed by Global Solutions Development and Torrence Architects. Bishop Nguyen was appointed in February by the Most Rev. Kevin Vann, Bishop of Orange, as Episcopal Delegate. In this role, Nguyen leads a committee tasked with master planning and overseeing the shrine’s development.
“I am honored to be a part of this noble project,” said Bishop Nguyen, who fled Vietnam in 1979 with 26 members of his family after facing religious persecution. Together, they faced a harrowing 18-day boat trip to the Philippines. Nguyen credits his family’s survival to prayer and Mary’s intercession.
The Our Lady of La Vang Shrine and its surrounding plaza, the Marian Court, will serve as a gathering point for visitors to Christ Cathedral and a heritage site for the Vietnamese-American community. There are more than 100,000 Vietnamese-American Catholics in Orange County, according to estimates by the Diocese of Orange.
To learn more about Our Lady of La Vang Shrine at Christ Cathedral, visit lavangusa.org.