ISSN 2330-717X

Thailand: Monks Translate Old Buddhist Scripture For Pope Francis


A mission to translate what is thought to be a two-century old scripture from Khmer into Italian, a gift to Pope Pius XI from King Rama VII, has been completed and is ready to be displayed at the Vatican Museum, according to Buddhist officials in Thailand.

The ancient Khmer scripture was presented to the pope by the king during a visit to the Vatican 83 years ago.

Phra Thepveeraporn, abbot of Wat Phra Chetuphon Wimonmangkhalaram — more commonly known as Wat Pho — in Bangkok, said Vatican officials told him last year that Pope Francis would like to exhibit the ancient Khmer-written scripture at the Vatican Museum.

However the pope didn’t understand the meaning and its context, so sought the temple’s cooperation on the translation, he added.

A working group was set up to translate the text, which took 11 months to complete.

The 186 page translated scripture — which comes in a cover of pure gold — will be displayed at the Vatican Museum, together with the original version.

Cardinal Francis Xavier Kriengsak Kovithavanij of Bangkok accepted the translated scripture on behalf of the Catholic Church.

Mercier Vishnu Tanya, deputy secretary-general of the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of Thailand, said this is a great opportunity to display teachings of the Lord Buddha as the Vatican Museum attracts many people every year.

Click here to have Eurasia Review's newsletter delivered via RSS, as an email newsletter, via mobile or on your personal news page.

UCA News

The Union of Catholic Asian News (UCA News, UCAN) is the leading independent Catholic news source in Asia. A network of journalists and editors that spans East, South and Southeast Asia, UCA News has for four decades aimed to provide the most accurate and up-to-date news, feature, commentary and analysis, and multimedia content on social, political and religious developments that relate or are of interest to the Catholic Church in Asia.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.