Casey Sanchez

Casey Sanchez is a staff writer at the Intelligence Report. His articles have appeared in The Village Voice, The Stranger, and The Chicago Reporter.

Recent Articles

Gulf Coast Notebook

Communities rebuild in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Ike.

The Mary Queen of Vietnam Church The recent election of U.S. Congressman Anh Cao, a first for Vietnamese Americans, stunned many observers but not those in the pews at Mary Queen of Vietnam, a Catholic parish in New Orleans East where Cao has been a member for over a decade. Refugees began arriving in New Orleans East shortly after the end of the Vietnam War in 1975. By 2000, the district was home to most of the city's 14,000 Vietnamese Americans, one of the largest concentrated enclaves in the country. When Mary Queen was founded in 1986, it became the first U.S. Catholic church to offer mass in Vietnamese. "We are back to the extent that we can bring forth a candidate," says Father Nguyen The Vien, 45, who has been a pastor at Mary Queen since 2003. He has lived in New Orleans since arriving as a 12-year-old refugee in 1975. During Katrina, most of New Orleans East was submerged under flood waters, leaving hundreds of parish members homeless. But New Orleans' Vietnamese community...