Marinduque is a 959.2 square kilometers island province located 160 kilometers southeast of Manila. The Diocese of Boac comprises the island province of Marinduque.
The total population of the area is 242,494 at the end of 2015.
Boac Diocese is a suffragan of Lipa Archdiocese
The diocese was created on April 2, 1977
Canonically Erected: May 10, 1978
Comprises the Province of Marinduque
Titular: Immaculate Conception, December 8
Boac was created a diocese in April 1977, separating it from the mother Diocese of Lucena in the province of Quezon. It comprises the entire civil province of Marinduque, an island province located between the Bondoc Peninsula at the southeastern portion of Luzon, and Mindoro Island. The province is surrounded by four bodies of water. Tayabas Bay to the north, Mompog Pass to the northeast, Tablas Strait to the west and southwest, and the Sibuyan Sea to the south. It is among the smallest provinces in the country, encompassing a land area of about 959 square kilometers. The diocese is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Lipa.
The island of Marinduque belonged to the old Archdiocese of Manila until April 10, 1910 when Pope Pius X created the Diocese of Lipa in Batangas, to which Marinduque was attached as a suffragan. When the Diocese of Lucena was created on Aug. 20, 1950, Marinduque became part of it until it was created as an independent diocese by virtue of an apostolic bull of Pope Paul VI issued in Rome on April 2, 1977, naming it the Diocese of Boac.
On May 10, 1978, the papal bull was carried into effect in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Boac, in accordance with a document signed by Archbishop Bruno Torpigliani, D.D., Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines at the time. Bishop Rafael M. Lim, D.D., a native of Boac who was then Bishop of Laoag, was appointed by Pope Paul VI as the first bishop of the new Diocese. He was solemnly installed on the same day the diocese was canonically erected, May 10, 1978.
The Diocese of Boac has the Social Action Commission (SAC) as its main arm for social apostolate, especially to the poor. It has four programs: The Basic Christian Communities-Community Organizing (BCC-CO) Program started in 1982. Since then it has formed 110 BCC-CO units comprising 1,918 members. 200 Community Organizing Volunteers have been trained under this program. There are also 30 full-time Community Organizers who are fielded to different areas of the province covering 218 barangays. The objective is to build basic Christian communities that are self-reliant in all aspects.
The Livelihood Assistance Program (LAP) began in 1986. It started with a loaning program to farmers and fishermen for their livelihood projects such as hog and poultry raising, fishing, and farm production. In 1993 the project evolved into a Multi-Purpose Cooperative. Thus began savings mobilization work among the BCC members and program beneficiaries.
The Community-Based Health Program (CBHP) was launched in October 1992 with the purpose of delivering primary health care to the depressed areas. Part of the program is the training of community-based health workers for the promotion of health care in the basic Christian communities. The CBHP also promotes herbal medicines, and has in fact ventured into the encapsulation of these medicines. Two health workers are undergoing a five-month intensive training on acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine.
The Enhanced Targeted Maternal Child Health Program (ETMCHP) started in 1979, aimed at upgrading the nutritional levels of children aged one to three years. It also hopes to hone knowledge, skills, and attitudes of mother participants in nutrition, health, and sanitation so that they may become positive contributors to the development of their respective communities.
The province Marinduque is a lone congressional district and is subdivided into 6 municipalities: Boac, Buenavista, Gasan, Mogpoc, Sta. Cruz and Torrijos with 218 barangays.
The per capita income in the territory of the diocese is 20,195 Philippines Pesos (USD440 as of January 2010).
Sources of income came from agriculture, mining and tourism in which they are famous with the Moriones Festival during the Lenten Season.
The major economic activity of this province is agriculture in which coconut is the primary crop followed by rice. Other agricultural products planted in the remaining lands are corn, banana, vegetables, root crops, coffee, cacao, some vegetables varieties, legumes as well as mango and peanuts.
Fishing is the second major industry of the island which is surrounded by rich fishing grounds that abounds with snapper, tuna, mackerel and other commercial fish species and some catch are being exported to other countries as well. The biggest share of fishing industry goes to the town of Sta. Cruz followed by Gasan, Torrijos, Boac, Mogpog and Buenavista.
Other industry of the province is livestock/poultry in which people raise carabao, cattle, hog, goat, chicken, duck, horse, goose, and pigeons. The province has also large deposits of minerals such as copper, iron, manganese, limestone, and clay.
The literacy rate (simple literacy) is 93.94 percent.