2016 GREAT FESTIVAL COMMEMORATING GOD AT THE CAO DAI HOLY SEE IN TAY NINH
Updated 2016-03-04 16:13:50
(Tay Ninh Holy See, February 15, 2016 – By Grzegorz Fraszczak)
On the 11th of February , the arrangement of 30 stands accompanying the Great Festival Commemoration Ceremony begun. They were set up along both sides of the Great Unity Square, from the Phạm Hộ Pháp boulevard to the Cao Thượng Phẩm boulevard. On the late afternoon of the 14th of February, the internal and external decorations were basically completed. They consisted of flags, flowers, and lights, creating an enchanting lively atmosphere consonant with the religious tradition. It became even more lively when more and more early visitors arrived.
On the next day, Feb. 15th 2016, at 8.00 am, the Holy See welcomed local and provincial authorities who came to participate in the Commemoration Ceremony. They were greeted at the Pope's Hall and then came to the brick-covered part of the big square in front of the temple, where Cardinal Thượng Tám Thanh and Mr. Nguyễn Minh Triều, the representative of the provincial government, gave speeches. Then, the twelve representatives (Cao Dai and non Cao Dai) cut the ribbon - a symbolic action indicating the opening of the festival.
Next, a group of Cao Dai dignitaries along with the local authorities walked from stand to stand to look at the exhibition and to mention that it is now open for public viewing, thus completing the opening ceremonial.
This year, after the festival opening, Deacon Trần Quang Cảnh - the President of Cao Dai Overseas Missionary - was ordained to the office of Priest.
In the afternoon, at 4.30 pm, the Holy See welcomed again local authorities and government representatives at the Pope's Hall. After the welcoming ceremony, all guests were invited to the vegetarian dinner, followed by the four Holy Animals parade in front of the shrine.
This parade was led by the Dragon-Horse (symbolising yang/yin duality, and also the universe's space/time duality), the four Holy Animals (Dragon, Unicorn, Turtle, and Phoenix; these animals symbolise power, peace and good luck, strength and longevity, and nobility respectively), a procession of young Khmer man performing one hand drumming (a type of traditional drumming used by the Khmer community in Vietnam), dancing minority groups, a representation of "Journey to the West" story, and finally a brass band. As it was estimated, over 10.000 people watched the parade performance.
The parade ended at 7.30 pm with the official visitors leaving, whereas many others went to see the exhibition stands that were blinking with lights, decorated by colourful flowers, and filled up with music sounds.
At 00.00 Monday (the 16th of February), the midnight worship in the temple commenced. The whole shrine and the square before the main entrance were filled with Cao Dai followers. It was estimated that there were around 3.000 of them. The prayer was followed by the Cardinal's reminder towards Cao Dai followers to keep a lucid spiritual heart and work together for the salvation of all living beings.
The 2016 Great Commemoration Ceremony of God ended, but has been remaining and resounding deeply in the mind-hearts of each child of the Merciful Father and Divine Merciful Mother.
See photos at this link : http://caodai.com.vn/vn/news-detail/hoi-thanh-cao-dai-toa-thanh-tay-ninh-to-chuc-dai-le-duc-chi-ton-nam-binh-than-2016.html
See videos at this link : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=teeK-aMKs0I&feature=em-share_video_user and