Vietnamese Buddhism has the right to be proud of its nearly 2,000-year history alongside the nation. Joy and joy of the nation, pain and pain of the nation, ups and downs with the nation.
In the glorious history of our country, whether in the role of liberating or building and defending the country, there are positive contributions of Vietnamese Buddhism.
The Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (GHPGVN) was established on November 7, 1981, in the context of a unified country, with mountains and rivers in one strip. Our whole country, on the one hand, enthusiastically worked for production, overcoming the consequences of war; on the other hand, facing all hostile plots against the revolution… After many difficulties in the process of national renewal, the Vietnamese Buddhist Sangha gradually developed sustainably and stably in all aspects. Vietnamese Buddhism is proud to have hosted Vesak Day (United Nations Day of Vesak) three times, and at the same time, established 04 academies. Among those great achievements is the modest contribution after 30 years of establishment (since 1992) of the Executive Board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha in Ben Tre province.
FOUNDATION AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE BEN TRE PROVINCE THE BEN TRE PROVINCE THE BEN TRE PROVINCE’S BOARD OF BEN TRE
After the establishment of the Vietnamese Buddhist Sangha on November 7, 1981, in 1989, all levels of government, the Front and mass organizations helped and mobilized monks and nuns to establish a temporary Buddhist representative board in Ben Tre province. The late Venerable Thich Thien Tin was the Chief Representative. This is the period of construction and consolidation, in order to prepare for the formation of the Provincial Buddhist Executive Board, term I (1992-1997), at the first Buddhist Congress. Thereby, bringing Ben Tre Buddhism into development in the direction of the Church with 08 Representative Boards of districts/towns and 08 specialized committees, including 04 Proving Monks and 28 members of the Executive Board. In the middle of the first term, the late Venerable Thich Thien Tin, because of his old age and weak health, nominated Venerable Thich Nhut Tan – Standing Vice Chairman to assume the role of Head of the committee to run the Buddhist affairs of the province. This is a period of continued development in all aspects in the context of the whole country continuing the cause of innovation and opening up.
In September 1997, the Buddhist Executive Board of Ben Tre Province for the second term (1997-2002) with 08 Representative Committees and 08 specialized committees, including 05 Venerable Monks, 26 members led by Venerable Thich Nhut Tan serve as Chairman. This is a period of steady preparation to enter the 21st century.
The 3rd Provincial Buddhist Delegate Congress took place on July 29-30, 2002 with great success, the Provincial Buddhist Executive Board for the third term (2002-2007) consisted of 3 Venerable Monks, 35 members of the Buddhist Board. The board is governed by Venerable Thich Nhut Tan as head of the committee.
From August 13-14, 2007, the 4th Congress (2007-2012) officially nominated 04 Proving Venerables, 38 members of the Executive Board. Venerable Thich Nhut Tan continued to be trusted and nominated by the Congress to be the Chairman of the Committee. This is the stage of organizational consolidation with 03 administrative levels: Central, province/city and district/town/city level, Church levels and Church’s grassroots units are allowed to use legal seals.
On September 18-19 2012, the 5th Congress (2012-2017) officially nominated 03 Proving Venerables, 57 members of the Executive Board, 16 permanent members holding 21 positions, Venerable Thich Nhut Tan continued to be trusted and nominated by the General Assembly to be the Chairman of the Committee. This is the period of consolidation and rejuvenation of the organization, the administrative unit consists of 08 districts and 01 city. At this stage, Ben Tre Buddhism develops in all aspects.
On March 17-18, 2017, the 6th Congress (2017-2022) officially nominated 04 Proving Venerables, 04 Heads of the Proving Nuns Division, 57 members of the Provincial Board of Directors, in There were 17 permanent members holding 22 positions, Venerable Thich Nhut Tan continued to be trusted and nominated by the Congress to be the head of the committee. This is a period of transformation to improve efficiency and establish 03 new committees (Board of Supervisors, Legal Department, Department of Information and Communication), continuing to rejuvenate personnel and administrative units including 08 districts and 01 city. In this period, Ben Tre Buddhism developed in all aspects, inaugurating the Headquarters of the Provincial Executive Board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha and the Ben Tre Provincial Buddhist School.
SMALL INDUSTRY ACTIVITIES
Buddhism in the province in the past 30 years has always accompanied the nation in many fields.
Regarding monks and nuns, the monks and nuns of the province always comply with the Charter, the Rules, Regulations… and the Law on Belief and Religion as well as Decree 162 of the Government and State law. In addition, based on legal documents, the Board of Directors promulgates regulations of the Provincial Office in order to concretize the provisions in the administrative activities of the Church.
Regarding monasteries, Buddhism in Ben Tre province currently has 268 monasteries, viharas, monasteries, and Buddhist recitation halls. Most of the monasteries had stable religious activities before 1981, there were 9 establishments that were subject to restoration and registered for new membership in the VI term (2017-2022). Since its establishment, the Church has successfully organized 14 Great Precepts for 2,312 precepts.
Regarding the education of monks and nuns, in the first terms of the Executive Board, because they were not eligible to open a Buddhist Intermediate School to train talented monks, the Board of Directors introduced monks and nuns to attend all levels of study at Chinese schools. Buddhist level of the provinces/cities. Since 2010, the Executive Board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha province has applied for permission to establish the Provincial Buddhist Intermediate School and has recruited students to train for 04 courses.
Regarding social charity, Ben Tre Buddhism’s social charity activities have positive achievements. Buddhists always attach great importance to “Serving sentient beings means making offerings to the Buddhas”, focusing on people, being compassionate and entering the world. With the tradition of “Protecting the nation, keeping the people safe”, Buddhism always accom especially for the disadvantaged in society, especially the poor, the elderly without support, those with meritorious services to the revolution, building bridges and roads, houses of love, raising orphans, etc. “Benevolent, beneficial for life” of Buddhism has partly helped the poor to rise up in life.
In addition to the three committees outlined in the activities of Buddhism in the province, eight departments under the Executive Board have always made great efforts to devote and complete their 30-year mission of mutual development in the hearts of the nation. Thus, the monks and nuns of Ben Tre province have completed the work entrusted to them by the Church with positive contributions to the Sangha, Education, Buddhist Guidance, Dharma propagation, etc., especially social welfare work. It can be affirmed that Buddhism has always played an important role in today’s social life and for the sustainable development of the country through historical periods. The social welfare activities of Buddhism are becoming more and more extensive, rich and in-depth, becoming a source of medical and educational services, and a cultural and ethical resource as well as a new function. Survival security”.
The Board of Directors of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha in Ben Tre province, over 30 years of establishment and development, is the result of the high unity and harmony, for the sake of the Dharma, for the nation of the monks, nuns, and Buddhists of the province. The results of the Executive Board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha in the province are the good results of the activities, patriotic service, contributing to the stability of society in the spirit of rationality and contractility of Buddhism.
Continuing the tradition of accompanying the nation, monks, nuns, and Buddhists in Ben Tre persistently implement the motto “Dharma – Nation – Socialism” in all religious activities, forming positive factors. successfully organized the district/city Buddhist Delegate Congress as well as building the staff of the 7th term, aiming to rejuvenate the provincial Buddhist leaders, advance to the Provincial Buddhist Delegate Congress, and set a welcome achievement. Ninth National Buddhist Delegate Congress. Besides, attaching studying and following Ho Chi Minh’s ideological, moral and style example with Buddhist work. In the coming time, the Board of Directors will continue to introduce educational and learning programs following the example of Ho Chi Minh’s ideology, morality and style among young monks and nuns. That is in order to promote the tradition of patriotism, to protect the nation and the people for the sake of the nation, and to dedicate talents and energies to the country and the Church. Thereby, creating more resources, joining hands with the Church, accompanying the nation, actively overcoming difficulties in economic development after the COVID-19 epidemic and salt-water disasters, in order to contribute to land development. rich, strong, democratic and civilized country as the wish of the patriarchs “Liturgating living beings, making practical offerings to the Buddhas”.
DD. Thich Tri Thuan