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Suffragan of Bogotá, in the Republic of Colombia, South America. Owing to the difficulties of providing adequately for the spiritual needs of the people over the wide area of the Diocese of Tolima, that see was suppressed by decree of 20 June, 1900, and two new bishoprics were formed in its stead: Ibagué and Garzon. Ibagué has jurisdiction over the two provinces that constitute the northern and central portions of the republic. The town of Ibagué (San Bonifacio de Ibagué) is the capital of the Department of Tolima, and is picturesquely situated on a fertile plain, about sixty miles west of Bogotá, at an altitude of more than 4000 feet above sea-level. This city, the seat of the bishopric, is located in the centre of a prosperous district, and dates from 1550. It was for a short time (1854) the capital of the republic. The first and actual bishop of the diocese, Msgr. Ismaël Perdomo, was born at El Gigante, now in the Diocese of Garzon , 22 Feb., 1872. On 29 April, 1903, he was elected to govern the diocese of Ibagué; he received episcopal consecration at Rome on 19 June, and on 25 June was preconized. The number of Catholics in the diocese is computed approximately, at 250,000. The cathedral, which is in process of construction, will be dedicated to the Immaculate Conception (see BOGOTA; GARZON).
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