Ongoing Harassment of the Church in China
“The most severe persecution happened to us on Sunday, October 17, 1999. They detained 150 Christians and prepared to send some of them to ‘reform through education’ camps for three years. They fined some of us 2,000 RMB. They didn’t even give me a receipt. (Society here is now so corrupt!) But we did not cease to meet.”
— Letter from Mr. Zhang dated March 28, 2000
“Recently, several of us co-workers were arrested while preaching and locked up in the police station. We were then moved to the provincial capital where we were interrogated, beaten and fined. The Lord surely will honor our sufferings. While we were prisoners for Jesus Christ, I experienced the Lord’s grace and the mutual love of the brothers and sisters. While we were being questioned, an official warned us: ‘Preaching the gospel is a crime that is illegal and disrupts social order. Listening to gospel radio from overseas is illegal — those radio stations are enemy agents! All the letters you write to them will be confiscated.’ So our faith was greatly tested, but our Lord Jesus is our victorious King, and Lord of history. He is the Lord amid His church. No one can hinder Him. Finally, the Lord heard my prayers and tears and I was released. He also gave me a safe way of communicating overseas and to receive Christian books. When I received the commentary on Corinthians the tears ran down my face and I became even more determined to study the Bible.”
— Letter from Mr. Wang dated April 11, 2000
“Just recently, we found a house to meet in together in a nearby village. This was God’s guidance. Our church — actually we are a meeting-point — faces many difficulties. Every time the church flourishes, people come and interfere. We also have pressure from outside. Not having a fixed meeting-place has caused many of the flock to be fearful and stumble and no longer want to attend meetings. We lack pastors. May the Lord raise up a faithful servant to revive our church.”
— Letter from Mr. Zhong dated April 15, 2000
“In January this year, the teachers organized the students to see a scientific propaganda exhibition to inform them that mankind had evolved. There were many local atheistic exhibitions because of the attack on the Falun Gong cult. The Religious Affairs Bureau held a meeting for all the (government regulated) TSPM church pastors in order to stop the growth of the house churches. They also wanted to eradicate some of them. At an internal meeting in the (TSPM) church, the pastors also relayed this official command downwards. Some people were unclear what it meant and so accepted it. But before they could carry it out, God Himself intervened to prevent them. Next to the church there is a school. The Education Department was digging the foundation for a new building there that created more than one hundred cracks in the church. So it was declared unsafe to meet in. They stuck a notice to this effect on the door and told the Christians they could go and worship in the school instead. With all this going on, the TSPM pastors in the church have had no time to pay attention to the house churches, which are still meeting normally in most cases. However, in one or two areas here, the police have interfered with their meetings, but most are okay.”
— Letter dated June 20, 2000
“Our meeting has stopped because, for the previous period, there has been a massive strike against the Falun Gong cult. All the house churches that have not been registered by the government have not been allowed to meet, and so have ceased.”
— Letter from Miss Xiang dated March 13, 2000
Copyright Â© 2000 Compass Direct News Service.
Used with permission.