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Diocese of Tagbilaran

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Diocese of Tagbilaran
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Comprising 50 parishes of the southern half of the island province of Bohol, Tagbilaran Diocese covers some 1,733 square kilometers in total area and has its seat in Tagbilaran City, the only city in the island. It is 803 kilometers south of Manila and 79 kilometers southeast of Cebu. 


In 2017, it has a total population of 1,003,902 of whom 773,401 are Catholics or some 77% of the total.


The diocese is predominantly peopled by Boholanos who speak Boholano Cebuano. Nowadays, there are many who speak Cebuano, Tagalog and English. There are also a sprinkling of Muslim merchants and Indians (0.17%) and Chinese.


There is a domestic airport and one international airport is being built on Panglao Island. There are basically only 30 taxicabs, 1,010 buses, and 4,716 vehicles for hire (PUs), and 9 trucking services. People in center commute through multicabs or pedicabs, and in barangays, habal-haball motorcycles have become the mode of transportation. The main highways are concrete but the barangay artery roads remain dirt. There are vans plying the route from north to south for middle class passengers.


The diocese still falls under the same political structure as the rest of the provinces in the Philippines. As of 2007 the average annual per capita income in the province was PHP16,478 (US$340 as of March 2009) according to the Bohol Provincial Planning and Development Office. A consultancy office noted high poverty in some areas. It noted that poverty incidence rose from 37.3% in 1997 to 47.3% in 2000. Note that Bohol ranked 16th poorest among the country's 79 provinces (2000 data). Some 305 barangays (villages, 30%) are in various stages of insurgency. However, the picture may have changed in the last five years due to increased number of Boholanos who have opted to become Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs).

There is limestone mining, soft drink bottling plant (Coca Cola), handicraft making, metalcraft, bamboo furniture making, cassava plant, etc. The galvanized iron plant established in the 60s is now closed. The main livelihood activities in the barangays in the diocese still remain farming (rice, vegetables, coconuts), fishing, nipa-making and copra selling. Due to the increased tourism activity, there is an increasing number of people engaged in the tourism services.

There were 5 cellphone companies, 6 telecommunication companies operating in 2008, and 6 radio stations, 5 TV/cable stations, 3 local newspapers, 7 messengerial services. Recently internet service providers have mushroomed all over and 20 plus in the whole diocese may be an underestimation.


There is Boholano music mostly accompanied by guitar or the rondalla, normally fast, funny or melodramatic. These have been replaced recently by videoke bars proliferating in the diocese. The curacha or curadang used to be popular during fiestas. There are festivals related to promises (panata) made to patron saints in some parts.

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