The New Taipei City (新北市) Government last week launched a bimonthly journal focusing on interfaith worship, religious festivals, ritual ceremonies and sacred shrines around the city.
The Chinese-language journal, which debuted on Jan. 2, is called Bo Pi New Taipei City (保庇新北市).
Bo pi is the Taiwanese way of referring to divine protection.
Photo: Tseng Te-feng, Taipei Times
Readers can turn to the journal to learn about the diverse religious cultures in the city, city officials said.
Those looking for divine blessings and guidance on gaining wealth, having a son or daughter, finding a lover or job prospects, can find advice in the journal, they said.
According to the city’s Civil Affairs Bureau, New Taipei City was the original starting place for migrant settlement and opening up new lands in northern Taiwan hundreds of years ago.
With such an historic and cultural background, it has an abundance of Buddhist-Taoist temples and Christian churches.
There are 952 registered temples and 120 churches, including 160 Buddhist-Taoist temples that are more than 100 years old, the bureau said.
There are also more than 3,000 Taoist shrines, called shentan (神壇), as well as “deity worship associations” (神明會) under the city’s supervision, the bureau said.
Two of the nation’s five major Buddhist monasteries are located in New Taipei City: Dharma Drum Mountain in Jinshan (金山) and the Ling-Jiou Mountain Monastery in Gongliao (貢寮).
Surveys by the bureau suggest that on average, there are two temples, shentan or churches per square kilometer around the city — with their highest density in Banciao (板橋), Sanchong (三重) and Yonghe (永和) districts.
Hsichih (汐止) and Sansia (三峽) districts have the highest number of registered temples, while Wulai District (烏來) has the fewest registered temples.
The top three deities worshiped in the city’s Buddhist-Taoist temples are the Earth God (土地公), Kuanyin (觀世音) and Matsu (媽祖), government surveys showed.
“From the establishment of these temples and churches, we can follow the historic and demographic development trends of our city. They are also the focus of important local festivals that preserve and pass down the cultural traditions and ritual ceremonies with their unique regional characteristics,” said Chiang Chun-ting (江俊霆), head of the Civil Affairs Bureau.
The bureau has also created a calendar listing temple festivals and religious celebrations for this year, which will be made available online as well as in Bo Pi New Taipei City, he said.
“This way we can introduce the public to the many unique temple festivals and religious celebrations around New Taipei City,” Chiang said.
Bo Pi New Taipei City will be published every other month, on the 20th, and will be available at libraries, local district offices and district household registration offices. It is also produced in ebook format, which can be downloaded at www.ca.ntpc.gov.tw/24;data_pagenode/details/.
China appears to have built mockups of a port in northeastern Taiwan and a military vessel docked there, with the aim of using them as targets to test its ballistic missiles, a retired naval officer said yesterday. Lu Li-shih (呂禮詩), a former lieutenant commander in Taiwan’s navy, wrote on Facebook that satellite images appeared to show simulated targets in a desert in China’s Xinjiang region that resemble the Suao naval base in Yilan County and a Kidd-class destroyer that usually docks there. Lu said he compared the mockup port to US naval bases in Yokosuka and Sasebo, Japan, and in Subic Bay
Police are investigating the death of a Formosan black bear discovered on Tuesday buried near an industrial road in Nantou County, with initial evidence indicating that it was shot accidentally by a hunter. The bear had been caught in wildlife traps at least five times before, three times since 2020. Codenamed No. 711, the bear received extensive media coverage last year after it was discovered trapped twice in less than two months in the Taichung mountains. After its most recent ensnarement last month, the bear was released in the Dandashan (丹大山) area in Nantou County’s Sinyi Township (信義). However, officials became concerned after the
The majority of parents surveyed in northern Taiwan favor the suspension of all on-site classes at schools from the junior-high level and below amid a surge in domestic COVID-19 infections, parent groups said yesterday. About 84.4 percent of respondents in a survey of 2,912 parents in northern Taiwan, where the outbreak is the most serious, said they supported suspending classes, the Action Alliance on Basic Education, the Taiwan Parents Protect Women and Children Association, and the Taiwan Love Children Association said. The groups distributed questionnaires to parents in New Taipei City, Taipei, Keelung, Taoyuan and Hsinchu city and county from Saturday morning
DETERRENCE: US National Security Council Indo-Pacific Coordinator Kurt Campbell said cross-strait affairs are on the agenda at the US-ASEAN Special Leaders’ Summit The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) yesterday thanked the Czech Senate for passing a resolution supporting Taiwan’s inclusion in the WHO and other international organizations for the second consecutive year. The resolution was passed on Wednesday with 51 votes in favor, one opposed and 11 abstentions. In addition to the WHO, it also called for Taiwan’s participation in the “meetings, mechanisms and activities” of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the International Civil Aviation Organization and Interpol. In its opening, the resolution states that the Czech Republic “considers Taiwan as one of its key partners in the Indo-Pacific region,” while noting its