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Catholic Church in China holds elections

By Xu Wei | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2016-12-28 18:01

Bishop Joseph Ma Yinglin was re-elected as chairman of the Bishops' Conference of the Catholic Church in China during the Ninth Assembly of Chinese Catholic Representatives on Wednesday.

Ma, the 51-year-old bishop of the diocese of Kunming, Yunnan province, was also re-elected as vice-chairman of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association during the assembly.

Bishop John Fang Xingyao of Linyi diocese in Shandong province was re-elected as chairman of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association during the assembly. Fang was also elected as vice-chairman of the bishop's conference.

Fang has been chairman of the CCPA since December 2010, when the eighth assembly of the Catholic Church in China was held. Ma has also been the bishop conference's chairman since December 2010.

In total, 365 representatives, including bishops, priests and lay Catholics, from across the country convened to select a new leadership for the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association and the Bishops' Conference of the Catholic Church in China, as well as revise the constitutions for both organizations.

Liu Yuanlong, the vice-presidents of CCPA, was also re-elected as the association's secretary-general at the event. Bishop Joseph Guo Jincai was also elected vice-chairman and secretary general of the Bishops' Conference of the Catholic Church in China. Bishop Joseph Shen Bin is elected vice-chairman of the CCPA as well as vice-chairman of the bishop's conference.

There are 65 bishops, about 3,100 priests and 5,800 nuns in the Catholic Church in China, and the country has more than 6 million Catholic followers, according to the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association.

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