In a country where religion is highly regulated, and in some cases severely restricted, is it possible that there are provinces where Protestant Christianity or Catholic Christianity are the predominant religions? According to research conducted by Professor Fengang Yang, director of The Center for Religion and the Global East, there are ten provinces in China where Protestant Christianity is the predominant religion, and one province where Catholic Christianity is predominate.
This is just one of the fascinating pieces of information that Professor Yang presented in his online lecture, “Where Are the Churches in China? And Why?”, co-hosted by ChinaSource, the U.S.-China Catholic Association, and the China Academic Consortium on June 16, 2022.
Using a series of maps, historical background, and sociological analysis, he gives us a glimpse of the geographical distribution of Catholic and Protestant churches in China. He also highlights a resource produced by his center called the Online Spiritual Atlas of the Global East, which allows users to see the geographical distribution of religious sites at the provincial, county, and prefecture levels.
In addition, a pdf version his book Atlas of Religion in China: Social and Geographical Contexts is available as a free download from Brill Publishing. Both resources are amazing.
We are grateful to Professor Yang for his fascinating lecture, his helpful resources, and for the work that he and his team are doing at the Center for Religion and the Global East at Purdue University.
Editor’s note: Text was lightly edited for clarity on July 9, 2022.
Image Credit: From Dr. Yang’s book Atlas of Religion in China: Social and Geographical Context.
Joann Pittman is Vice President of Partnership and China Engagement and editor of ZGBriefs. Prior to joining ChinaSource, Joann spent 28 years working in China, as an English teacher, language student, program director, and cross-cultural trainer for organizations and businesses engaged in China. She has also taught Chinese at the University …View Full Bio
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