CLAIM: A priest was murdered while hearing confession on May 3, 2023

A Facebook user made a false claim that a priest in Vietnam was murdered while hearing confessions on May 3, 2023.

On May 4, 2023, the Facebook user posted a photo of Fr. Joseph Tran Ngoc Thanh with a caption erroneously claiming that the priest, who was part of the Dominican Order, was killed “yesterday.”

 “My heart is sore this morning, please pray for Fr. Thanh friends and family[.] Yesterday, he was murdered while hearing Confessions in his parish. Please pray for the Dominicans in Vietnam,” the Facebook user said.

 The story is more than a year old.

 Fr. Thanh, a missionary in Vietnam’s Kontum diocese, “was stabbed many times while he was hearing confessions in the church on Jan. 29,” reputable Catholic news service Union of Catholic Asian News reported on Jan. 31, 2022.

 The priest received medical treatment but later died, official church news outlet Vatican News reported, also on Jan. 31, 2022.

 The erroneous post has been engaged with more than 600 times and shared nearly 700 times. A number of commenters, using prayer emojis, sent their condolences.


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