by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – The International Christian Concern (ICC) advocacy organization has published a new Persecution Incident Report for China, attesting that the years-long persecution against believers by the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has intensified to where it is no longer safe to be Christian in the country. The ICC report covers the period July 2021-June 2022.
ICC explains in the report that the CCP is working to Sinicize China by forcing religious groups, and Christians in particular, to submit to the party’s communist ideology. The ICC report records twenty cases of the Sinicization of churches in the reporting period.
Clamping down on “illegal” independent evangelical house churches, the CCP allows only tightly-controlled state-approved churches that are registered with the Three-Self Patriotic Movement to operate.
“All state-approved churches are required to raise the national flag, place regulations on worship, incorporate core socialist values into sermons, and maintain traditional Chinese culture,” the report states.
The report notes that the CCP’s control of churches extends not only to in-person gatherings but also to online religious expression.
In March of 2022, the Chinese government announced that it was implementing a ban on online religious activity,” the ICC report says.
“This restriction forces Chinese churches and religious organizations to register with the state and receive permission to post religious content online. The regulation was established to ensure all religious activity aligns with the Communist Party’s agenda.”
Moreover, the report shows Christians have been subjected to arrest and detention for expressing their faith. The report records 32 such cases within the reporting period. Arresting Christians is common in China,” the report states.
“In the reporting period, there were thirty-two cases of arrests or detainments of Christians. The earliest recorded incident of detainment comes from July 2021, when officials escorted Preacher Wu Wuqing and five other Christians from the Early Rain Covenant Church (ERCC) to the police station.”
There have also been reports of raids at the homes of ERCC members.
Noting that its report does not provide an exhaustive list of all the cases of Christian persecution in China, ICC concluded: “With the intensified crackdown against churches— both state-vetted and underground—there is no longer a safe place to be a Christian in China.”
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