St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Hanoi, Vietnam.
Dave Stamboulis/age fotostock
Though it is just outside the French Quarter, St. Joseph’s Cathedral is one of the most famous landmarks of the colonial era in Hanoi. The neo-Gothic church was modeled after Paris’s Notre-Dame Cathedral and sits on the west side of Lake Hoan Kiem. The church dates from 1886, making it the oldest church in the capital city. (Vietnam has a Catholic population of around 4 million people.) After the Viet Minh officially took control of North Vietnam in 1954, following the Geneva Accords, Catholic leaders and institutions were repressed and St. Joseph’s was closed for decades. In 1990, services resumed, and now several masses take place each day, sometimes drawing more worshipers than can fit in the building.
Hanoi is one of the loveliest cities in Asia, with a beautiful Old Town and enchanting neighborhood near St Joseph’s Cathedral, and what we especially loved was going for a stroll in the evenings seeing the reflection of the One Pillar Pagoda glistening off the Turtle Lake. http://0dysseusjournal.blogspot.com/2012/01/vietnam-natures-work-of-art.html