My Neighbourhood #2

The Sacred Heart Parish church just around the corner from me must be one of the busiest Catholic churches in the country. From Friday evening there is an endless progression of services in various languages. Parking can get very tight. For years there was a decaying cement statue of the Virgin next to the church which was very popular - particularly with Vietnamese parishioners. If you were to go walking very early in the morning you would find several elderly Vietnamese people deep in prayer in front of the fence that protects the statue. In the last year the old statue was removed and replaced with this odd new on which looks as though it might be made of sandstone. The surrounding area has been paved and landscaped and a higher fence put around it to dissuade vandals. If you look closely it might be possible to discern a slightly oriental cast to the Virgin's features - or am I just imagining it? I think the statue was done locally, as I've never seen one like it in Vietnam. I kind of like it, but then, I'm biased.


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