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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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Apostolic Prefecture of Yangzhou

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Apostolic Prefecture of Yangzhou
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Yangzhou, postal romanization Yangchow, is a prefecture-level city in central Jiangsu Province, China. Sitting on the north bank of the Yangtze, it borders the provincial capital Nanjing to the southwest, Huai'an to the north, Yancheng to the north-east, Taizhou to the east, and Zhenjiang across the river to the south. Its population was 4,414,681 at the 2010 census and its urban area is home to 2,146,980 inhabitants, including three urban districts, currently in the agglomeration.

Historically, Yangzhou was one of the wealthiest cities in China, known at various periods for its great merchant families, poets, artists, and scholars. Its name (lit. "Rising Prefecture") refers to its former position as the capital of the ancient  Yangzhou prefecture in imperial China. Yangzhou was one of the first cities to benefit from one of the earliest world bank loans in China, used to construct Yangzhou thermal power station in 1994.

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