Diocese of Ningxia
  • share this post
  • Share on facebook
  • resize textlarger | smaller

The open Church community of Ningxia diocese covers the whole Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, which is around 66,400 square kilometers; whereas the underground community still follows the Holy See's jurisdiction, which covers partly Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, northern part of Shaanxi (overlapping partly Yulin diocese) and Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region (overlapping partly Bameng diocese).


Ningxia has a population of 6.3 million people with Han Chinese and Hui ethnics being the majorities.


Besides official Mandarin Chinese, Lanyin dialect is popularly in use in the north and Longzhong dialects in the south.


The Catholic Church in Yinchuang City, capital of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, was returned to the Church. It became the first place in Ningxia to take lead in revival of religious life. Catholics were thrilled and spread the news around. But shortly after, Father Ma Deming returned to Shaanbei (northern Shaanxi) and Father Liu Zhiguo suffered from heart disease due to many years of reform-through-labor. He died in 1987. In 1983, Father Liu Jinshan, the former rector of Sanshenggong seminary in neighboring Inner Mongolia was sent to administer the Church in Ningxia.

 The Church in Ningxia at that time only has a dilapidated church in Yinchuan. Whenever there was an important Church feast, all Catholics in Ningxia would come to this church for Mass. In 1986, Father Liu traded the land plot of the former nun convent for RMB 670,000 yuan. He demolished the old church and built a new one in 1987.


The Yinchuan Hedong Airport is located in the southeast of Yinchuan city. It has direct flights to Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Guangdong, Shenzhen and about 18 other cities in other part of China. Another new airport, Zhongwei Xiangshan Airport, is also in use while the Guoyuan Airport is under construction. For railroad service, the Baolan Route passes through the Autonomous Region from north to south of Yinchuan city. It connects Baotou (Inner Mongolia) to the north, ancient Lanzhou city (Gansu Province) to the west, and Baozi (Shaanxi Province) to the south.

Inside the Autonomous Region, there are six national expressways with several dozens long distance buses going to different counties and cities of the region as well as to Beijing, neighboring Shaanxi, Gansu, and Inner Mongolia, and even to eastern Zhejiang and Fujian provinces.


Ningxia is a relatively dry, desert-like region. The region is 1,200 kilometers from the sea and has a continental climate with average summer temperatures rising to 17 to 24 degrees Celsius in July and average winter temperatures dropping to between -7 to - 10 degrees Celsius in January. Seasonal extreme temperatures can reach 39 degrees Celsius in summer and ?30 degrees Celsius in winter. The diurnal temperature variation can reach above 17 degrees Celsius, especially in spring. Annual rainfall averages from 190 to 700 millimeters, with more rain falling in the south of the region.


Ningxia is the province with the third smallest GDP in China. Its nominal GDP in 2008 was just 133.46 billion yuan (US$19.5 billion) and a per capita GDP of 21,470 yuan (US$3,143). It contributes 0.3% of the national economy. It has established Yinchuan Economic and Technological Development Zone in 1992 and the Desheng Industrial Park in Helan County is a base for about 400 enterprises. The industrial park has industrial chains from Muslim food and commodities to trade and logistics. It is the principal region of China where wolfberries are grown.


Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region is located in northwestern China on the Loess Plateau, and the Yellow River flows through a vast area of its land. The Great Wall of China runs along its northeastern boundary. Its capital is Yinchuan. Ningxia is bounded by Shaanxi province to the east and Gansu in all directions but the north provinces and Inner Mongolia to the north. Formerly a province, Ningxia was incorporated into Gansu in 1954 but was detached and reconstituted as an autonomous region for the Hui people in 1958.


According to the fifth census, there are about 207,500 people who have received tertiary education, accounting for 4.11 percent of the population in the Autonomous Region. Illiteracy population (above 15 years old) amounts to 632,300 people.


In the Warring Period, Ningxia is a place where barbarians living in scattered. In Qing and subsequent dynasties, it is a county state. It was given the name Ningxia and the status of province in Yuan Dynasty. Then it was placed under the rule of Shaanxi in Ming Dynasty and was under Gansu province during Qing Dynasty. In 1928, the republican government made it Ningxia province.