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Updated: May 17, 1988 05:00 PM GMT
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Bishop-elect Zhang Hualiang has assumed his duties over the northeastern Chinese province of Liaoning, following the death of a China-appointed bishop in one of its dioceses early this year, a Church source here said.

Four dioceses -- Shenyang, Fushun, Yingkou and Jinzhou -- had been established within Liaoning province by the Vatican before 1949.

The Chinese Church, according to the source, grouped them into one, called Liaoning diocese, in the early 1980s. Liaoning province has about 25 priests and 110,000 Catholics.

Father Zhang Hualiang, 75, was elected the first China-appointed bishop of Liaoning in July 1987, the source said. He also replaced the late Bishop Zhao Youmin as director of the Shenyang regional seminary.

Father Zhang graduated from the Changchun major seminary, which has been closed, and is fluent in Latin and French. He is expected to be ordained soon, the source added.

Bishop Zhao Youmin, who was elected bishop of Jinzhou in 1958 by the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, died in March at age 79.

Resuming his pastoral duties in 1980 after the 1966-76 Cultural Revolution, Bishop Zhao moved his bishopric to Fushun.

He became rector and spiritual director of the Shenyang seminary when it was opened in 1982, and succeeded the late China-appointed Bishop Xu Jingjiang of Shenyang as the seminary board director two years later.

Meanwhile, Nanchong diocese in the southwest province of Sichuan has elected Father Wang Duguang, also known as Wang Woze, as the diocesan administrator, to succeed the late China-appointed Bishop Fan Daojiang, who died late last year.

Father Wang, 81, was ordained in 1936. He was previously a parish priest in Suining city.

There are eight priests and about 30,000 Catholics in Nanchong diocese.


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