BUDDHISTS in Hue have given an enthusiastic welcome home to their favourite Catholic priest, Fr. Paul Cao van Luau, who has been reinstated by Vietnam's military council and provisional government as rector of the State university in Hue.
His summary dismissal on August 16 sparked a protest movement among Hue professors and students that spread to the student world in the university and some secondary schools in Saigon
About 500 people gathered at the airport to welcome Fr. Luan back last Saturday, and 1,000 formed a parade that conducted him into the city.
Buddhists are said to make up 3(1 per cent of Hue's population, estimated at 100.000. Hue parish statistics show 15.800 Catholics in the city. The majority of the 50 full-time professors (of whom more than 40 resigned in protest over Fr. Luan's dismissal) and most of the 2,500 students enrolled in Hue University are non-Christians.
Er. Loan's reception in Hue. where Buddhists first clashed with the former government's forces, is another sign that the real issue is not one religion against another.
On the 22-man Military Revolutionary Council there are two Catholic generals.