Vietnamese priest on trial for criticizing the Party

This is from an AP story.  It is an excerpt:

HUE, Vietnam (AP) — A high-profile dissident Catholic priest denounced Vietnam’s Communist Party in a startling display of defiance as he went on trial Friday on charges of disseminating materials intended to undermine the country’s government.

Father Thadeus Nguyen Van Ly was led into the Thua Thien Hue Provincial People’s Court in central Vietnam in handcuffs along with four alleged accomplices, but he refused to stand and identify himself before the chief judge, Bui Quoc Hiep.

"Down with the Communist Party of Vietnam!" Ly shouted, in a striking outburst in a country where dissent is harshly punished. A police officer then covered Ly’s mouth as he continued shouting, and removed him to a nearby room where the proceedings were broadcast on a loudspeaker.

Ly, 60, who has been jailed for his pro-democracy activities before, is accused of producing anti-government documents and communicating with anti-communist groups overseas. He could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted in the verdict, expected later Friday.

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  1. gravitas says:

    Not that this priest isn’t brave — he certainly is. And it’s not that his cause isn’t just — bringing
    down communism is of the most importance. But I just wish priests like this would have the same ziel and passion
    for restoring the faith as they do their parochial issues. I’m just a little tired of watching our religious
    march in anti-death penalty events and global warming parades. At some point they need to get back to being
    true Alter Christos and not activists.

  2. gravitas says:

    And, those may not be the right examples, leading people to think I mean fighting communism is left wing like being anti death penalty or global warming. Even the prists that run Priests for Life spend way too much time on TV and not nearly enough time offering Mass and doing true missionary work.

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