Nanyang Diocese covers Nanyang city, 2 districts and 11 counties in Henan province. Nanyang, a prefecture-level city, has the largest area of administration as well as the largest population in Henan. It borders Xinyang to the southeast, Zhumadian to the east, Pingdingshan to the northeast, Luoyang to the north, Sanmenxia to the northwest, the province of Shaanxi to the west, and the province of Hubei to the south.
The diocese currently has two bishops, 18 priests and two diocesan women religious congregations. It also runs two elderly homes and a handicapped children home (35 handicapped children). There are 9 parishes and over 100 temporary churches and missionary points. The Catholic population is over 20,000.
Nanyang has 10.9 million as of 2008, which is the largest prefecture-level city in China now. The Urban area has over 0.8 million people, which is the third largest city in Henan province. There are 43 ethnic minorities living in Nanyang, accounting for 2.4 percent of the city population.
Mandarin, Henan dialect and Nanyang dialect (spoken by about 15 million people around the area) are in use in the diocesan territory.
In 1844, the Apostolic Vicariate of Henan was established from the Apostolic Vicariate of Nanjing. In 1882, it was was split into northern and southern Henan. The name of Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Henan was changed into Apostolic Vicariate of Nanyangfu in 1924. It was elevated into a diocese in 1946.
Nanyang has an excellent geographic location. It has convenient transportation and communication. Nanyang is a hub to connect the rest part of Henan province, and provinces of Hubei, Sichuan and Shannxi. Currently, railway line of Jiaozuo-Luozhou goes through the whole Henan province while the planned new railway line Nanjing-Xian will intersect with the Jiaozuo-Luozhou line at Nanyang.
The climate is generally moderate and is a four-season humid subtropical climate, with strong monsoon influences: winters are cool but dry, and hot, humid summers. Spring and autumn provide transitions of reasonable length.
Nanyang is positioned as the economic hub of central China and a front gate to external connection.
The city lies within the Nanyang Basin, which is part of a region in Central China that lies in the gap between the eastern end of the Qinling Mountains and the source of the Huai River.
Nanyang owns 8 institutions of higher education and 14 colleges. It implements 9-year compulsory education and the enrolment ratios of high school and university are 60 percent and 9 percent respectively.
Nanyang is one of the 62 national historical and cultural gems. In Nanyang city, there is the Hanhua Museum which mainly displays Han Dynasty stone pictures. To the east of the city, there is the temple of holy physician Zhang Zhongjing; 20 miles to the north, there is scientist Zhang Heng's Grave (Han Dynasty) and his museum; to the west, there is the Temple of Marquis of Wu, a temple to commemorate Zhu Geliang, an advisor of the Kingdom of Shu ruled by Liu Bei during the Three Kingdoms era.
Besides, numerous renowned writers of contemporary literature are nourished in Nanyang and it is also said to be the cradle of the Chinese opera. Folk literature and art also count to the richness of the culture context of Nanyang. The beauty of River Bai is gorgeous and ravishing. The picturesque nature landscape of Nanyang also becomes major attraction to tourists.
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