Vietnamese in Belgium

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People Name: Vietnamese
Country: Belgium
10/40 Window: No
Population: 1,300
World Population: 86,819,200
Primary Language: Vietnamese
Primary Religion: Buddhism
Christian Adherents: 17.00 %
Evangelicals: 10.00 %
Scripture: Complete Bible
Online Audio NT: Yes
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Vietnamese
Affinity Bloc: Southeast Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

For over two thousand years, people in the land of Vietnam have recognized their national identity. During those two millennia China controlled Vietnam about one half of the time.
In 1887 Vietnam became part of French Indochina. From 1939 to 1975 the Vietnamese fought the Japanese, French and then the Americans.
The communists under Ho Chi Minh overthrew the French in 1954. The Geneva Accord of 1954 split the country into North and South Vietnam along the 17th parallel. The US gave aid to South Vietnam. The US military withdrew from the country in 1973. Two years later the communist north overtook the south and "re-united" the country. Under state socialism the nation's economy floundered. In the 1990s the government began to allow market reforms and the economy has grown to become one of the leading economies of Southeast Asia.
People who worked with the South Vietnamese government were severely persecuted and had to flee. Most of the ethnic Vietnamese who left their country fled during the wars and in the 1970s and 1980s. Thousands of Vietnamese now live in France, the USA, Canada, Australia, the UK, and Belgium.
The first Vietnamese to come to Belgium came in 1965 as students. Most of them arrived between 1975-90 after Vietnam fell to the communists. Smaller numbers came to Belgium as common workers from Soviet satellite countries starting in 1989. Most of the Vietnamese in Belgium live in Brussels, especially along the Boulevard Anspach where they own businesses. Others are in the Wallonia region, especially around the city of Liège. They have close relations with the Vietnamese community in nearby France.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Most of the ethnic Vietnamese in Belgium are now acculturated. Most of the Vietnamese Diaspora are from the southern part of the country, and they have adapted well to free market economics. Many are successful businessmen in Belgium.

What Are Their Beliefs?

No matter where they live, it is common for the Vietnam to practice Buddhism blended with their old spiritual practices. There are many Christians among the Vietnamese in Belgium. Most of these are Roman Catholics with a smaller Protestant church.

What Are Their Needs?

The Vietnamese must see that Christianity is not a foreign religion imposed on them by outsiders. Jesus Christ is their Savior and the Lord and King of all. The Vietnamese must see the love of Christ lived out among them by Spirit-filled disciples.

Prayer Points

Ask the Lord to send loving workers to Vietnam.
Pray for a spiritual hunger among the Vietnamese that drives them to read the Bible and listen to Christian radio programs.
Pray for a revival in the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches in Vietnam.
Pray for a Church Planting Movement in Vietnam that sweeps the nation in this decade.

Text Source:   Joshua Project