Our Lady of La Vang Vietnamese Catholic Parish

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Interior of Our Lady of La Vang Catholic Church

Our Lady of La Vang Vietnamese Catholic Parish is a parish of the Diocese of Birmingham in Alabama established in 2003. It is based at St John Bosco Catholic Church at 142 52nd Place North, off 1st Avenue North in Birmingham's Woodlawn neighborhood.

The Parish is named in honor of "Our Lady of La Vang", a depiction of the Blessed Virgin Mary associated with a apparation of the Virgin to a group of Catholic refugees hiding in the jungles of central Vietnam in 1798. Though the vision has not been recognized as an authentic appearance of Mary by the Vatican, the church built in nearby La Vang in honor of the event was recognized as a national shrine of the Immaculate Conception by the Vietnamese Bishops Conference in 1958. It was made a basilica by Pope John XXIII in 1962, but was destroyed during the Vietnam War in 1972. Pope John Paul II expressed support for rebuilding the basilica in 1998, the bicentennial of the reported vision. The new structure, delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, was dedicated in August 2023. There are numerous churches, parishes, and shrines dedicated to the depiction of the Virgin as a Vietnamese woman based on the apparition.

Services at Our Lady of La Vang are conducted in the Vietnamese language, but are open to all. A statue depicting Our Lady of La Vang is displayed outside the church on a shrine wall on the south wing of the church building.



  • Lody, Father Joseph, ed. (2009). History of the Diocese of Birmingham. Strasbourg, France: Éditions du Signe.
  • Jenkins, Philip (June 29, 2022) "Our Lady of La Vang," Christian Century