Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Close to home...

Today I shared on the topic "Christianity in China" with my Mandarin class. It got me searching on what's happening right now in terms of the underground movement. I kind of thought things were getting better as China's market is booming and things are opening up so much more than before. However, authorities seem to be cracking down on things in recent months. I read this article about the raid of a gathering right in Hubei- where I lived last year.
I'm going to copy a piece of it here, and leave with you a couple links if you're interested in reading more:

MIDLAND, Texas (Christian Newswire) -- China Aid Association learned one House Church pastor was detained on March 20, 2006 at Hubei Province. Pastor Lian Changnian is now detained at the Detention Center of Xiantao City, Hubei Province. Pastor Lian who is from Xi?an City, Shannxi Province was leading a Bible study of over 100 believers at a House Church at Xiantao City when the raid occurred.

CAA also learned 15 House Church Leaders are still detained, including a 15-year-old female evangelist, following a brutal police raid on a house church leaders? meeting in Henan Province. Two prominent human rights lawyers in Beijing agree to represent the persecuted church leaders. Sources say the pastors were accused of being ?illegal evil cult members? by the authority, however, these pastors are believed to be part of the Henan Fangcheng Mother Church group which is known worldwide as an evangelical House Church group in China.

There are some scary, yet very powerful stories of the faithful in China.
For a good news summary- "China's Christians Suffer for their Faith" (BBC- November 2004).
For a great website on Christian persecution in the world (updated very regularly), go here. At the bottom of this page you will find many recent articles related particularly to persecution in China. The most recent were written were "Open Season on Christians" (March 28, 2006), and "China Arrests and Tortures House Church Leaders in Crackdown" (March 22, 2006).
This is also an outstanding site, "China Aid", which tells the stories of many amazing brothers and sisters in China.

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