Writing contest invites young people to share their love for their parents


A Redemptorist priest recently organized an online writing contest to promote love and understanding among Catholic parents and children in Vietnam.

Fr. Joseph Le Quang Uy told UCA News he organized the contest for his youth group, named Fiat, to encourage them to take the celebrations of Mother's Day and Father's Day more seriously.

Twenty-five young writers submitted 28 pieces about their relationships with their parents. On Aug. 1, the writers, their family and friends attended a thanksgiving Mass at the Redemptorist residence in Ho Chi Minh City. Some writers, accompanied by their parents, read their stories after Mass.

"Today, children talk little to their parents," the priest explained. He lamented that young people can chat for hours but do not tell each other about their parents. They are proud of being fans of some music, film or football star but do not take pride in their parents, he said.

The contest did not have any prizes. "Children's biggest prize is their parents, and parents' biggest prizes are their beloved children," the priest said.

These letters were collated in a book. One thousand copies were printed and are on sale. Each of the writers received a copy to give to their parents. They also received paintings of Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

Fr. Uy founded Fiat with a group of young Vietnamese Catholics this past April. It has now grown to 149 members, aged 16 to 73. After Sunday Mass, they break into small groups and visit hospital patients, centers for disabled people, orphans, people with HIV/AIDS, and retired religious and clergy.

The group’s letters can be viewed at www.360.yahoo.com/fiat.xinvang

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