In a quiet corner of lively downtown Ho Chi Minh City stands Notre Dame Cathedral, the one enduring monopoly of Catholicism in the mainly Buddhist Vietnam. Built in the late 1880s by French colonists, it was previously called Saigon Church. The name Notre Dame was set after the installation of the statue ‘Peaceful Notre Dame’ in 1959. In 1962, the Vatican bestowed the Cathedral status as a basilica and gave it the official name of Saigon Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica. Made from red bricks imported from France, the neo-Romanesque structure is 60 metres tall and has two towers comprises six bronze bells. In front of the Cathedral stands a figurine of the Virgin Mary, made in Rome from Italian marble, which was alleged to have shed tears in 2005.