Celebrating the 500th Anniversary of Catholicism in the Philippines

“…500 years have passed since the Christian message first arrived in the Philippines. You received the joy of the Gospel... And this joy is evident in your people … We see it in your eyes, on your faces, in your songs and in your prayers. In the joy with which you bring your faith to other lands …”

~ Pope Francis said in his homily of the Mass at the Vatican on March 14, formally opening the yearlong celebrations marking the 500th anniversary of Catholicism’s arrival in the Philippines.

A country of 7,641 islands at the sea of southeast Asia with a population of 109 million, of which more than 10 million are migrants living in almost 100 countries across the world.

Why the Pope calls Filipinos “smugglers of faith”? What makes the local Church so unique?

What is the Catholic population in the country? How many dioceses, bishops are there?

All you need to know about the Church in the Philippines in one click
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Diocese of Pingliang

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Bishop Nicolas Jide Han
Bishop  Han
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Bishop Nicolas Jide Han
71 Beihoujie Catholic Church,
Pingliang, Gansu, China
Postal Code: 744000

Phone: +86-933-598 1082, +86-933-391 9379

Bishop Nicolas Han Jide was born in June 1940 in Sanyuan county of neighboring Shaanxi province. He entered the minor seminary in Shaanxi in 1957 and could only continue his study at the place of the then Bishop Joseph Zhong Huaide of Sanyuan in 1980 before he was ordained a priest for Pingliang Diocese in 1985.

He was clandestinely ordained bishop by his predecessor Bishop Philippe Ma Ji of the "open" Church community in 1996. Bishop Han became the ordinary on Sept. 5, 1999 after Bishop Ma's death in February the same year.

Previous Ordinaries:

  • Bishop Philippe Ma Ji (1987-1999)
  • Bishop Ignatius Larranaga, OFM Cap (1930 - 1975)

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