Ngày Lễ Tạ Ơn

“Cũng trong bữa ăn, Đức Giê-su cầm lấy bánh, dâng lời chúc tụng, rồi bẻ ra, trao cho môn đệ và nói: ‘Anh em cầm lấy mà ăn, đây là mình Thầy.’ Rồi Người cầm lấy chén, dâng lời tạ ơn, trao cho môn đệ và nói: ‘Tất cả anh em hãy uống chén này, vì đây là máu Thầy, máu Giao Ước, đổ ra cho muôn người được tha tội.” (Mt 26: 26-28).

Lạy Ngài, Ngài là Chúa Giê-su, Đấng cứu tọi trần gian, nếu có bóng tối, xin Ngài ban cho ánh sáng; nếu có nỗi đau đớn, xin Ngài ban cho sự an ủi; nếu có sự thất vọng, xin Ngài ban cho hy vọng.

Sau đây tôi xin chia sẻ với các bạn bài lời viết của Đức Hồng Y Phanxicô Xaviê Nguyễn Văn Thuận:

Chấm này nối tiếp chấm kia, ngàn vạn chấm thành một đường dài.
Phút này nối tiếp phút kia, muôn triệu phút thành một đời sống.
Chấm mỗi chấm cho đúng, đường sẽ đẹp.
Sống mỗi phút cho tốt, đời sẽ thánh.
Ðường hy vọng do mỗi chấm hy vọng.
Ðời hy vọng do mỗi phút hy vọng.

Chúc các bạn một Ngay Lễ Tạ Ơn đầy hy vọng.

– Trần Anh Nhật

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Hoi Cho Tet 2012

January 21st, 2012 — International Centre, Mississauga

The year started off with a bang for the Vietnamese-Canadian community and in particular for activist group DTN Phan Boi Chau Youth for Democracy. Our booth at this year’s Hoi Cho Tet was better than ever as we supported our cause for human rights in Vietnam, as well as promoted the global Phai Len Tieng!/Speak Up Now! Campaign, whose objective is to give a voice to the 17 Vietnamese Catholic activists unjustly detained while advocating for Religious Freedom and the people’s rights in Vietnam. Many people stopped by our table to tell us why they speak up.We also put a lot of effort into setting up the Lang Vietnam (Vietnamese Village) this year, and performed “Phai Len Tieng” by composer Anh Bang after presenting the Phai Len Tieng/Speak Up Now music video, a project that came out of the Digital Activism Seminar in Toronto last Autumn. All in all, we were very glad to be able to contribute to another successful Hoi Cho Tet for our community.

PBC Speak Up Now! Photos

Photos credited to members of PBC.

– Minh-Thùy

PBC Toronto at Oktoberfest 2011!

Sunday, October 09, 2011 – Monday, October 10, 2011: Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario.

DTNPBC Toronto once again took part in this year’s Oktoberfest parade in Kitchener & Waterloo, where the biggest Oktoberfest celebration is held outside of Germany. Over here, it occurs on the very same week as the Thanksgiving weekend, so some of us PBCers got to spend Thanksgiving together. 🙂 We were also joined by our dear Hoi Nguoi Viet Kitchener Waterloo as every year, as well as the Vietnamese Student Associations of the University of Waterloo and Laurier.

The special thing about this year’s parade was that the Vietnamese community had a PARADE FLOAT!! It was made following last year’s parade with many donations from community members and the very hard work of the Tokyo Auto Collision bodyshop, who also run the Toronto Vietnamese Marching Band. This year was the first time it appeared in public at a parade!

Hope to see everyone there again next year!!

Tet Trung Thu 2011

Saturday, September 17th, 2011 — Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, ON.

At this year’s Tet Trung Thu, Doan Thanh Nien Phan Boi Chau had a table to attract youth activists make their cause known to the community. They also distributed mini VNCH flags and flyers advertising their upcoming youth-lead protest to the guests and it was a big hit!!

Thoi Bao Festival 2011

Saturday, August 13th, 2011 – Mel Lastman Square, Toronto, ON.

Last Saturday was the Thoi Bao festival, another opportunity for Toronto’s Vietnamese community to gather for random festivities, haha. I had the opportunity to perform with my friend James Duong (Duong Thai Hoa), an extremely talented musician who’s even performed for Trung Tam Asia!! It was fun. 🙂 Check out James’ videos on youtube, too! Link to our performance below. 😀

In other news, most of my friends and fellow PBC members have been in Manila, Philippines over the past 2 weeks for a life-changing conference with hundreds of other Vietnamese youths around the globe. I miss them like crazy!! Definitely going to attend next time…!!!

Also, PBC Camp “Trai An Tinh” 2011 is coming up soon! Lots of prepping underway. Look forward to that.

Unveiling of the first ever Vietnamese-Canadian community parade float

Sunday, June 05, 2011 – Tokyo Auto Collision Body Shop, Toronto, ON.

Last weekend, a part of the Vietnamese-Canadian community in Toronto gathered to celebrate the unveiling of the first ever official parade float to represent the Vietnamese Refugee and Expatriate community in Canada. This float will participate in big events such as the Oktoberfest Parade in the Kitchener-Waterloo region of Ontario. Many members from several Vietnamese community groups attended the event. Two MPs from the Canadian government also attended to show their support, one of them on behalf of Canada’s current Minister of Citizenship, Immigration, and Multiculturalism, the Honourable Jason Kenney. It was a lovely afternoon, and I am sure this wonderful float will go down in the history of our community. Many thanks should go out to the people who built the float with only their own passion, good will, and bare hands. It is an amazing piece of work and will be forever cherished by our Vietnamese-Canadian community.

Photography courtesy of PBC photographer Brian Nguyen!

PBC at Ignite Cultural Show 15!

Saturday, March 19th, 2011 @ Markham Theatre

It was that time again… the 15th annual Ignite Cultural Show, where Vietnamese Student Associations (VSAs) across Ontario get together for one amazing and exciting evening of performance and theatre, each showcasing their members’ inspiring creativity and multiple talents.

This year, for the first time, DTNPBC Toronto was featured as one of the guest performers. For PBC’s performance, some of our members got together and arranged a medley of different songs by Phan Văn Hưng, an inspiring Vietnamese activist and musical composer from Australia. PBC’s act was the closing number and personally I am very proud of our performance. 🙂

Congratulations to:

1st place OTTAWA/CARLTON U

2nd place RYERSON U

3rd place YORK U

And everyone else for their hard work. It was one awesome show.

Here are a few photos of the evening… enjoy!

Many thanks to our photographer Brian Nguyen for the photos!

Pray for Japan

As I sit here in my safe and warm house, I can’t stop thinking about the devastation recently caused by the massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan. All the news and footage pouring out from the country is heartbreaking, but all the aid, relief, support and love the world is sending to Japan is also inspiring. Japan is a nation long known for its strong will, determination, togetherness and endurance, and I am confident the Japanese people will pull through.

If you haven’t already done so, please clasp your hands together tonight and say a prayer for the people of Japan. Pray for the person who is still fighting for their life to pull through. Pray for the person still trapped under the rubble to quickly be found. Pray for the person still searching for missing loved ones to be reunited. It is the least we can do from over here.

God bless Japan!

“What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal.” -Albert Pine

HAPPY LUNAR NEW YEAR!

Chúc Mừng Năm Mới An Khang Thịnh Vượng!

Hope everyone is having a great start to the lunar new year. Today our university closed due to the “snowstorm” that has just blown into Toronto from the States. It’s not that bad, really, but I’d say this is a pretty awesome way to kick off the lunar new year, hahaaa…

Since it’s the year of the cat, here’s a photo of one of our beloved critters. Her name’s Sheba! Ain’t she a beaut? 😀

Anyway, don’t forget to make a new year wish! And do all that new year stuff. Visit your temple, give new year greetings to your elders…

I sincerely wish everyone good health and ample happiness for another year. Let’s all keep doing our best together. 🙂

Hoi Cho Tet 2011

International Centre, Mississauga, Ontario – Saturday, January 22nd, 2011: Vietnamese Lunar New Year Festival

Chuc Mung Nam Moi… Happy year of the CAT! 🙂

Last Saturday was the annual Hoi Cho Tet Festival at the International Centre in Mississauga. Usually they’d have two going on at once–one in Mississauga and the other in Toronto–but this year it was just one gigantic HCT. It was cold that day, so very cold… It even snowed some, too. But that didn’t seem to stop the usual masses from hoarding to HCT like every year.

What did stop a number of regular attendees and organizations, though, was a controversy surrounding one of the MC’s hired to host the HCT concert. I will only go over this in brief, but the story seems to be that Nguyen Cao Ky Duyen, whom you may recognize from Thuy Nga Paris By Night, became the reason for the HCT boycott after she was hired to MC a dinner to promote business relations between the Vietnamese communist government and the United States. During this dinner, she introduced an official for the Vietnamese communist embassy, while wishing him prosperity and giving him a praising welcome. Her actions quickly became subject for criticism among the North American communities of the Vietnamese diaspora. They felt that after showing her good will to the Vietnamese communists, she was in no position to be representing our community at any event, and certainly not at a festival as prominent as Hoi Cho Tet. Our community has long been advocating for Freedom, Justice, Democracy, and Human Rights in Vietnam, all of which have been non-existent since 1975 when the country fell under communist rule. Whether it is for work or money or any reason, we can in no way knowingly agree to support Vietnamese communism, which is destroying our motherland, oppressing our people, and continuing to taint the minds of its youths with its totalitarian ideals.

Our members got together before the day of HCT and together PBC decided not to boycott HCT 2011, but we do strongly share in the feelings of the Vietnamese diaspora and are fully aware of but do not in any way condone the actions of Nguyen Cao Ky Duyen. Personally I believe our choice to participate this year was justified. Our reasons for participating were to talk to and educate the community members, fly our Vietnamese Freedom and Heritage Flag, not show defeat in the face of difficulties, and support the Vietnamese-Canadian community in general.

I think at the end of the day, though different groups made different decisions, the outcome does further our cause. Having a number of regulars boycotting such a big event does make a statement, but we also needed some groups to participate in HCT, else our true cause will be utterly lost on the people. I think PBC’s youthful presence and VT’s long-standing experience made a positive difference at this year’s HCT.

For Hoi Cho Tet, PBC’s talented members made a new presentation board, business cards, and cute “cat pins” especially for the new year of the cat. I was able to speak to and meet a handful of young people with a lot of knowledge, interest, and potential. Although I spent most of my time there at PBC’s table, it was really worthwhile.

Photography courtesy of Huy Trinh and Natalie Vuong. Thank you!