The announcement in a pastoral letter of the episcopate, at the end of its annual meeting. The jubilee will last until 6 January 2011. The bishops have not spoken of a visit of Benedict XVI. Legal Advisory Committee set up to address issues relating to the land of ecclesiastical bodies. Mgr. Thomas Vu Dinh Hieu ordained bishop.

Xuan Loc (AsiaNews) - The special jubilee of the Vietnamese Church and the serious problems created by governmental authorities in the area religious institutions and property were the main topics addressed by the annual general meeting of the bishops' conference, held in Xuan Loc October 5 to 10.

The 31 bishops of 26 dioceses - for health reasons, the Archbishop of Hanoi Ngo Quang Kiet and the bishop of Can Tho, Emmanuel Le Phong Thuan were absent - sent a pastoral letter to Catholics in Vietnam in which they explained that 2010 was chosen to express gratitude to the martyrs who with their blood, and that of other Gospel witnesses, made the Church fruitful. "2010 - continues the letter - marks 350 years since the creation of two dioceses of North and South Vietnam (1659-2009) and 50 years since the establishment of the Catholic hierarchy in Vietnam."

The Jubilee will be opened at Kien So, Hanoi, on 24 November this year on the anniversary of the Vietnamese Martyrs, and will end on the Epiphany in 2011, at the national Marian Sanctuary of La Vang.

The celebration of the jubilee, the bishops write, "is a propitious time to look back in order to thank God, learn the lesson of history discuss the current situation of the Church, the favourable situations and challenges it faces, and to look ahead with the determination to build a church that discerns and obeys the will of God. "

The minutes of the meeting, signed by Mgr. Vo Duc Minh, Coadjutor Bishop of Nha Trang, does not report any reference to a visit of Benedict XVI, a visit long rumoured to have taken place during the Jubilee celebrations. The possibility was also discussed by state media, which are painting the jubilee as "a favour and grace of government courtesy" and who have called on Catholics not to protest, but to obey without question the decrees of the local authorities regarding land disputes.

This topic was also addressed by the bishops, who have examined legal aspects at the source of tensions with the government, which have also resulted in persecution. It was decided to create a statutory advisory committee, led by Mgr. Thomas Nguyen Van Tram from Ba Ria and which will see the participation of lawyers Catholic and non-Catholic.

A petition has also been sent to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, to begin the process of beatification of bishops Francois Pallu (1626-1684) and Lambert de la Motte (1624-1679).

They then renewed their appeal for emergency aid for the victims of typhoon Ketsana and Parma.

In addition, Saturday, all 31 bishops present took part in the Episcopal ordination of Mgr. Thomas Vu Dinh Hieu, appointed by the Pope on 25 July to be auxiliary bishop of Xuan Loc.

A the ceremony (pictured) there were also 600 priests and 15 thousand faithful. Bishop Joseph Vo Duc Minh, President of the Bible Council of Vietnam commented that "Bishop Thomas can proclaim to everyone that 'The Holy Spirit has called me to go to the poor and proclaim to them the Good News”.