In a land area of 15,020 square kilometers, the diocesan territory covers Osaka, Hyogo and Wakayama prefectures.
In the diocesan territory, the population is 15,298,505 at end of 2008. (The population of the whole country is 127 million). Most residents are ethnic Japanese. There are also 320,742 non-Japanese people, according to the Immigration Bureau of Japan, 2008.
On June 15, 1891, the Vicariate Apostolic of Central Japan was raised to the status of a Diocese and constituted the Diocese of Osaka. The vicar apostolic, Monsignor Felix Nicolas Midon, M.E.P. was consecrated bishop. On Jan. 27, 1904, with the establishment of the Prefecture Apostolic of Shikoku, all of Shikoku was entrusted to Spanish Dominicans, and on May 4, 1923, with the establishment of the Vicariate Apostolic of Hiroshima, the five prefectures of Okayama, Hiroshima, Yamaguchi, Shimane, and Tottori were entrusted to German Jesuits.
On June 17, 1937, when the Prefecture Apostolic of Kyoto was established, the four prefectures of Kyoto, Nara, Mie, and Shiga were entrusted to the Maryknoll Fathers, and the present jurisdiction consisting of the Hyogo, Osaka, and Wakayama regions was established. In 1940, upon the resignation of Bishop Jean-Baptiste Castanier, M.E.P., Father Yoshigoro Taguchi was appointed to succeed him and was consecrated bishop on Dec. 14, 1941.
On June 24, 1969, the Osaka Diocese was raised to the rank of Archdiocese and Bishop Taguchi was appointed the first Archbishop of Osaka.
On Feb. 5, 1970, Father Hisao Yasuda was appointed Auxiliary Bishop and was consecrated on March 21, the same year.
On March 3, 1973, Archbishop Taguchi was elevated to the cardinalate. On Feb. 23, 1978, Cardinal Taguchi died, and on Nov. 15 of the same year Bishop Yasuda was appointed Archbishop of Osaka.
Father Jun Ikenaga, S.J. was appointed Coadjutor Archbishop of Osaka on Nov. 2, 1995. He was consecrated bishop on March 20, 1996.
Archbishop Yasuda resigned on May 10, 1997, and Archbishop Ikenaga was installed on June 22, 1997. (Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan, 2010)
Airplanes, railways, ships and buses connect the diocesan territory with the world.
The per capita income is in:
Osaka: 3,048,000 JPY/year (33,753 USD as of February 2010)
Hyogo: 2,731,000 JPY/year (30,239 USD as of February 2010)
Wakayama: 2,708,000 JPY/year (29.982 USD as of February 2010)
according to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, 2005
Major industries are in:
Osaka: Metal, textile and plastic products, electrical devices and machinery
Hyogo: Manufacturing, service, real estate, wholesale, retail, transport and telecommunication
Wakayama: Petroleum, chemicals, steel, machinery, foods
(Japan External Trade Organization, 2010)
Throughout Japan, literacy is 99 percent, according to the Central Intelligence Agency, USA in 2010.