|Officials often raid house churches
such as this one in Guizhou province.
(Photo: China Aid)
(Ezhou, Hubei—Jan. 19, 2017) Officials interrupted a Bible study in China’s central Hubei province on Jan. 10, taking six Christian women into police custody and confiscating church property.
Officers from the local religious affairs, public security, and urban management bureaus broke into a church at 10:30 a.m. on Jan. 10 and accused the people gathered there for a Bible study of holding illegal religious meetings.
A pastor of the church, surnamed Zhang, informed China Aid, “We rented a room in the county for regular gatherings. The religious affairs bureau posted a notice, accused us of illegally [gathering], and threatened to ban our church. We did not stop the gatherings; on the contrary, we kept on meeting. The officers from the government departments came and took away our doormat, but we managed to get it back. After about 30 or 40 minutes, they simply walked in and began to grab our chairs. The [Christian] brothers tried to stop them, and the officers began to shove us away and beat us up. They took our stuff away in the end.”
During this process, authorities detained six Christian women, including Hao Zhiwei, another one of the church’s pastors. The other five women are Hong Ying, Wang Qiufen, Wang Yourong, Yu Hongxing, and Long Yujie. Each defendant has been defendant has been given a detention sentence ranging from 10 to 15 days on the charge of organizing unauthorized religious activities.
As of now, their family members have not received detention notices.
China Aid reports abuses, such as those suffered by the six Christian women, in order to stand in solidarity with the persecuted and promote religious freedom.
|A church in Ezhou, Hubei received this notice, which
has been translated on the left. (Photo: China Aid)
Ethnics and Religious Affairs Bureau of Echeng District
The privately established Yanji Christian gathering site:
You (organization) established a religious site and organized religious activities without obtaining permission from related departments beginning November 2016, which violated the Articles 20 and 43 of the Regulations on Religious Affairs. The workers from Yanji County People’s Government and Yanji County Police Station had visited you twice to clarify the policy, urged you to go through the legal procedures and verbally demanded you to stop all religious activities and preaching activities, but you disregarded these suggestions and continued holding gatherings. The bureau hereby prohibits the private Yanji Christian meeting place according to the Article 43 of the Regulations on Religious Affairs, forbidding you to organize any religious activities or missionary work.
If you (organization) have objections regarding the criminal activities, basis of punishment and the details about the punishment aforementioned, you can submit a statement in written form (reply to a charge) and apply for an administrative review at the Echeng District People’s government, the Ethnic and Religious Affairs Bureau, or the People’s Court of Echeng District.
Process server: (two signatures) Guowen Chen Guoping Liu
Recipient: (If the related party does not sign the notice, the process servers can indicate beneath, but recordings and videotapes are required.)
Time of delivery: February 28th, 2016
Phone number: 0714-3895506
Address: 70 Mingtang Road, Echeng District, Ezhou City