Diocese of Fukuoka
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In a land area of 14,361 square kilometers, the diocesan territory covers Fukuoka, Saga and Kumamoto prefectures.

Population

In the diocesan territory, the population is 7,740,200 at end of 2008. (The population of the whole country is 127 million). Most residents are ethnic Japanese. There are also 64,545 non-Japanese people, according to the Immigration Bureau of Japan, 2008.

Language

The territory also has many languages/dialects.

History

The Diocese of Fukuoka was established on July 16, 1927, when it was separated from the Diocese of Nagasaki and entrusted to the Paris Foreign Mission Society. At first it consisted of the five prefectures of Fukuoka, Saga, Kumamoto, Miyazaki, and Oita. However, on March 29, 1928, the two prefectures of Miyazaki and Oita were entrusted to the Salesians.

The first bishop was Bishop Fernand Thiry, M.E.P. Bishop Albert Breton then served from 1930, and when he retired in 1941, Monsignor Sen'emon Fukahori became Administrator Apostolic. He was consecrated Bishop on May 28, 1944.

On Dec. 2, 1969, Bishop Fukahori resigned and Bishop Saburo Hirata, who had been Bishop of Oita, was appointed to replace him. Bishop Hirata served until 1990.

When Bishop Hirata resigned as of Oct. 6, 1990, Bishop Hisajiro Matsunaga, who had been Auxiliary Bishop of Nagasaki, was appointed to succeed him. Bishop Matsunaga was installed on Jan. 15 of the following year. He passed away on June 2, 2006 before celebrating the 50th anniversary of his ordination on Dec. 22, 2006. During the vacancy of the episcopacy for about two years, Father Soichiro Kawakami served as the Diocesan Administrator.

On March 19, 2008, Bishop Ryoji Miyahara was appointed Bishop of Fukuoka and installed on May 18, 2008. (Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan, 2010)

Transportation

Airplanes, railways, bus and ships are means of transportation in the diocesan territory.

Economy

The per capita income in the area is in:
        
Fukuoka: 2,661,000 JPY/year (28,950 USD as of February 2010)
Saga: 2,507,000 JPY/year (27,276 USD as February 2010)
Kumamoto: 2,384,000 JPY/year (25,934 USD as of February 2010)
(Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, 2005)

Major industries are in:
        
Fukuoka: Transport equipment, electronic parts and machine, general machinery, iron and steel, foods
Saga: Food/beverage products, electrical machinery, general machinery and equipment, metal products and chemicals
Kumamoto: Electrical equipment, transportation equipment, food and beverage products, general equipment and metal products

according to Japan External Trade Organization in 2010.

Education

Throughout Japan, literacy is 99 percent according to the Central Intelligence Agency, USA in 2010.

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