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China’s ‘apple Catholics’ add spiritual activities to daily routine
Catholic Spirit ^ | 08/24/2013 | Tom McGregor

Posted on 08/23/2013 6:30:05 PM PDT by TexGrill

Many rural villages in Shaanxi do not have a Catholic parish, and some with churches struggle with sparse attendance.

But the village of Fufengxian, near the town of Baoji, has a population that is more than 80 percent baptized Catholics. When villagers are not tending to their apple orchards, they can be found attending Mass or praying at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church.

They call themselves “China’s Hometown of Apple Catholics.”

The official population of Fufengxian stands at a mere 300, but many young adults have migrated to the big cities, so most of those who remain are elderly farmers and young children. About 90 villagers live there permanently, while more than 70 residents are parishioners.

The church was established in 1986, as the Chinese Catholic Church was emerging from decades of communist repression.

The parish currently is served by three priests and three sisters from the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary.

Sister Ma Wang-ge said the nuns had received medical training so they could open up a small medical clinic with a pharmacy in the village. They have taught many local children how to read by tutoring them and organizing Catholic catechism classes, she told Catholic News Service in an email interview.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Catholic; Ministry/Outreach; Religion & Culture; Worship
KEYWORDS: chinacatholic
Global Catholic tip
1 posted on 08/23/2013 6:30:05 PM PDT by TexGrill
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