Diocese of Anhui
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Anhui Diocese covers 17 prefecture-level divisions: Hefei, Anqing, Bengbu, Bozhou, Chizhou, Chuzhou, Fuyang, Huaibei, Huainan, Huangshan, Lu'an, Ma'anshan, Suzhou, Tongling, Wuhu and Xuancheng. The 17 prefecture-level divisions of Anhui are subdivided into 105 county-level divisions (44 districts, five county-level cities, and 56 counties).

Population

In 2010, there is a population of 59 million people in the diocesan territory.

Language

Mandarin and local dialects are used in the diocesan territory.

History

In Anhui, Wuhe county is the first place where Catholic faith was introduced and in 1649, Father Johann Adam Schall von Bell came there to preach. During the late period of Qing dynasty, Wuhe once again was seen as a base of French Jesuits to preach the Catholic faith in the northern part of Anhui.

In 1921, the Apostolic Vicariate of Anhui was split from the Apostolic Vicariate of Kiang-nan (Jiangnan) and was renamed as Apostolic Vicariate of Wuhu in 1924. Five years later, Bengbu and Anqing (Anking) were separated from Wuhu and became apostolic vicariates. In 1946, the three apostolic vicariates were elevated into dioceses with Anqing being designated a metropolitan archdiocese. They were served by Jesuits from Spain and Italy. In the early 1950s, soon after the establishment of Peoples' Republic of China, foreign missioners were expelled and all religious activities were all suspended during the Cultural Revolution.

In 2001, due to an acute shortage of clergy, the dioceses of Wuhu, Bengbu, Anqing and vicariate apostolate of Tunxi were merged to form the Diocese of Anhui. However, the Holy See does not recognize the changes.

Transportation

Conventional railways in Anhui include the Beijing-Shanghai Railway, Beijing-Kowloon Railway, and Nanjing-Xi'an Railway that traverse the province north of the Yangtze River and the Nanjing?Tongling Railway, Anhui-Jiangxi Railway and Xuancheng-Hangzhou Railway that run south of the river. High-speed lines include Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway, Hefei-Wuhan Passenger Railway and Hefei-Nanjing Passenger Railway.

Climate

As with a diverse topography, the Anhui province differs in climate from north to south. The north is more temperate and has more clearcut seasons. January temperatures average at around -1 to 2 degree Celsius north of the Huai He, and 0 to 3 degrees Celsius south of the Huai He; in July temperatures average 27 degrees Celsius or above. Plum rains occur in June and July and may cause flooding.

Economy

Anhui's primary industry accounts for 15 percent of GDP, 50 percent higher than the national average of 10 percent, with major crops including rice, wheat and sweet potato. Anhui has a variety of natural resources including large iron deposits in Ma'anshan, coal from Huainan, and copper mines in Tongling. Compared to neighboring provinces on China's east coast Anhui has not experienced the same rapid economic growth, as a result Anhui's GDP per capita is around one-third of its neighbors Zhejiang and Jiangsu. Hefei, Wuhu, and Ma'anshan have benefited from their close location to Yangtze River and as a result they are significantly wealthier than the rest of the province due to their industrial and manufacturing industries.

Topography

Anhui is an inland province located in eastern China across the basins of the Yangtze River and the Huai River. It borders Jiangsu province to the east, Zhejiang to the southeast, Jiangxi to the south, Hubei to the southwest, Henan to the northwest, and Shandong for a tiny section in the north. The provincial capital is Hefei.

The name "Anhui" derives from the names of two cities in south Anhui, Anqing and Huizhou (now Huangshan City).

Education

At least 12 universities in the province

Culture

Huangmeixi or Huangmeitone, which originated in the environs of Anqing in southwestern Anhui, is a form of traditional Chinese opera popular across China. Huiju, a form of traditional opera originating in the Huizhou-speaking areas of southern Anhui, is one of the major precursors of Beijing Opera, while Luju is a type of traditional opera found across central Anhui, from east to west.

Anhui cuisine is one of the eight great traditions of Chinese cuisine. Combining elements of cooking from northern Anhui, south-central Anhui, and the Huizhou-speaking areas of southern Anhui, Anhui cuisine is known for its use of wild game and herbs, both land and sea, and comparatively simple methods of preparation.

Anhui also has a high concentration of traditional products related to calligraphy: Xuanzhou (today Xuancheng) and Huizhou (today Huangshan City) are revered for producing Xuan Paper and Hui Ink, respectively, which are traditionally considered the best types of paper and ink for Chinese calligraphy.

Hong Kong diocese congratulates religious jubilarians

Hong Kong diocese congratulates religious jubilarians Cardinal John Tong Hon described the occasion as a gesture of gratitude for the indispensable service that the brothers, priests and sisters have offered to the people of Hong Kong.