Yang was converted and baptized when studying in Shanghai. He earned his doctorate in medicine from Paris University, France. He was teaching at Aurora University when Shanghai was liberated in 1949, and was the first Catholic in the university to cooperate with the Chinese Communist Party.
In Jan 1951, when the People’s Government took over the administration of Aurora University, he was the first to support the move and accept government appointments, assuming the posts of dean of studies and the head of the medical college, positions formerly occupied by foreigners. In the autumn of 1952, Aurora University was renamed Shanghai Second Medical College, and Yang was appointed its vice president.
In 1956 he attended the conference sponsoring the formation of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association. In 1957, at the First Representative Conference of the Chinese Catholic Church, his speech was entitled “The Question of the Relations between the Chinese Catholic Church and the Vatican.” His speech influenced the formation of the Chinese Catholic patriotic Association, and he was elected the vice chairman of the new national body. He was proficient in English and French, and used them to counter negative ideas foreigners had about China’s achievements and religious policy.
In the medical field, he edited and wrote over 50 academic theses, including those on hygiene, forensic medicine, phototherapy, and human anatomy. In 1959 he was elected a member of the standing committee of the Third Chinese People’s Political Consultative Council.
This article is reproduced, with permission, from A Dictionary of Asian Christianity, copyright © 2001 by Scott W. Sunquist, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, Michigan. All rights reserved.