Our Lady of Lavang dedicates new shrine and chapel during New Year’s Day ceremony

February 8, 2011

HOUSTON — On New Year's Day, Daniel Cardinal DiNardo celebrated the dedication of Our Lady of Lavang's new shrine and chapel. Nearly 3,000 attended the event on the parish grounds at 12311 Old Foltin Rd., Houston. The procession of the liturgy included Knights of Columbus, deacons, Archdiocesan priests and priests from other parts of the country and Canada.

Special clergy guests and concelebrants were Father Joseph Liem Trung Tran, O.P., Prior Vicariate of the Dominican Brothers of Saint Vincent Pham Hieu Liem, from Calgary, Alberta, Canada; and Father Joseph Liem Thanh Nguyen, President of the Federation of Vietnamese Catholics in the U.S.A., from Norcross,Ga.

The Mass of dedication of the Our Lady of Lavang Shrine and Chapel was held outdoors on the stage of the Shrine and under the 14-foot statue of Our Lady of Lavang, made of white marble shipped from Italy. Our Lady of Lavang stands on a large, 40-foot concrete tree called LaVang. On both sides of the stage stands other concrete LaVang trees, each approximately 25-feet. The trees were designed and built by the artist Thong Pham, one of the parishioners of Our Lady of Lavang. Our Lady is fully dressed in a traditional Vietnamese gown called "áo dài." The large choir performing at the event represented the six choirs of the parish.

After the homily, Cardinal DiNardo dedicated the outdoor altar and blessed the outdoor shrine on the stage and the chapel behind the shrine. †