by Stefan Bos, Worthy News Correspondent
Zhang Chunlei of the Guiyang Ren’ai Reformed Evangelical Church in Guizhou Province’s capital Guiyang urged “brothers and sisters not to stop gathering—no matter the circumstances. “
Elder Zhang, who serves 37 days of detention on what he views as trumped-up charges of “suspected fraud,” said believers should not be “distressed.” “God will never do anything wrong, nor will He [God] regret what He has done,” his lawyer quoted him as saying.
His church expressed concerns that security forces “routinely raided numerous houses and apartments where” they and other Christians live.
Believers in China are also taken to mobile transformation facilities where authorities try to brainwash Christians in mobile “transformation facilities,” according to a new report.
The U.S.-funded Radio Free Asia quoted a man given the pseudonym Li Yuese, who said he was beaten in a windowless room for nearly ten months.
Li explained that he was detained after authorities raided his house church in 2018. “There were no windows, no ventilation, and no time allowed outside,” said Li. “I was given just two meals a day, which were brought to the room by a designated person.”
He said authorities “threaten, insult and intimidate you. These were United Front officials, men, women, sometimes unidentified, usually in plain clothes. The police turn a blind eye to this.”
“You have to accept the statement they prepare for you.” Li added that if “you refuse, you will be seen as having a bad attitude, and they will keep you in detention and keep on beating you.”
Many reportedly try to commit suicide.
The suppression affected both Protestants and Catholics, with priests disappearing for “five, six, even ten years at a stretch,” he said.
The report was just the latest to reveal alleged abuses at the hands of Chinese authorities. The ruling Chinese Communist Party views the rising number of Christians in the country as a threat to its atheistic ideology.
Officially, China is home to an estimated 68 million Protestants, of whom 23 million worship in state-affiliated churches under the aegis of the Three-Self Patriotic Association. There are also some nine million Catholics, the majority of whom are in state-sponsored organizations.
Communist officials and Church groups say there may be at least as many as 130 million Christians in the communist-run Asian nation of 1.4 billion people.
Reports have also emerged of former detainees among Uyghurs who claimed horrific abuses like raping women with electrocuting instruments.
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