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US seminarian's escape from death linked to intercession of late Vietnamese cardinal

November 12, 2010

An American seminarian who was twice declared dead believes that he may owe his life to the intercession of the late Cardinal Francois-Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan.

Joseph Nguyen, an immigrant from Vietnam whose family was friendly with the cardinal, was comatose for 32 days in 2009; at one point his death certificate was fully completed. But the seminarian recovered from the fever that had threatened his life. He now says that he remembers virtually nothing from his time in the coma, other than two “visits” from Cardinal Van Thuan.

Cardinal Van Thuan, who was president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace from 1998 until his death in 2002, had earlier suffered valiantly through 13 years in Vietnamese prisons, 9 of them in solitary confinement. A cause for his beatification was opened in 2007.


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