Buddhist dignitaries appointed as heads of Spratly pagodas

The standing board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) executive committee in the central province of Khanh Hoa on February 21 announced decisions to appoint three monks as heads of pagodas in Truong Sa (Spratly) island district.

They consist of Venerables Thich Nhuan Hieu, Thich Tam Thanh, and Thich Dinh Thong, who will respectively oversee Da Tay A pagoda, Sinh Ton pagoda, and Son Ca pagoda for two years, starting from their date of departure.

As heard at the announcement ceremony, the standing committee considers the appointment of the monks as heads of the pagodas in the district as an important action in the development of the Dharma in the border and maritime areas. A Buddhist monk, first of all a Vietnamese citizen, when starting to receive missions in remote islands, realises that each pagoda in Truong Sa island district is not only a spiritual place but also a landmark marking the sacred sovereignty of the Fatherland.

The island district now has nine pagodas, whose head monks are appointed alternately by the provincial VBS executive board based on their voluntariness.