Changchunli Church Requests Prayer

ChinaAid
October 11, 2010

SHANDONG — When the congregation of Changchunli Church discovered that some of their members were targeted for arrest, they quickly sent out a letter requesting prayer to all churches in China and some contacts abroad. The following letter was sent during the early morning of October 8, 2010.
INTERCESSORY PRAYER FOR THE CHANGCHUNLI RELIGIOUS INCIDENT
I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the LORD, give yourselves no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth. Isaiah 62:6-7

It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man. It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes. Psalms 118:8-9
Dear fellow believers in Christ,

We are the members of Changchunli Church in Ji’nan, Shandong province in China. We are sending our request for intercessory prayer to fellow Christians to uphold the right path of the Lord and to oppose the series of evils committed by the demolition and removal of Changchunli Church. We invite you, brothers and sisters, to depend on the Lord whole-heartedly and pray for the religious persecution in Changchunli. We seek the blessings and guidance of the Lord. So that you may know our specific requests, the following is brief information concerning the persecution our church has endured:

On June 8, 2009, the director of Ji’nan Municipal CCC/TSPM deceitfully and forcibly passed a resolution at the Standing Committee of the Municipal CCC/TSPM. He signed a agreement that would employ the demolition and removal of Changchunli Church. Prior to the signing of the order, the Management Committee of Changchunli Church and the entire congregation were left completely in the dark in terms of the document. According to the agreement, the original area of 1,129.33 square meters of Changchunli Church’s property would be reduced to an area of merely 300 square meters. The right of use on over 800 square meters of land, worth over 20 million yuan (almost $300,000 USD), was arbitrarily revoked from our church. This agreement violates Articles 30 and 33 of the “Regulations on Religious Affairs.”

There is evidence that shows the discussion and negotiation concerning the loss of over 800 square meters of church property was actually conducted by the director and deputy director of Ji’nan Municipal Bureau for Ethnic and Religious Affairs, instead of the Municipal CCC/TSPM.  The forced voting on the agreement was also manipulated by the two directors.

To force the acceptance of this resolution, the Municipal CCC/TSPM made quite a few unlawful decisions. Pastor Wang Sanyuan was removed from his position as the chief pastor of Changchunli Church, all gatherings were suspended, and the function of the Management  Committee of Changchunli Church was stopped. They also attempted to seal the church by force the following day. The issued order was boycotted by the church, and the government dispatched over 100 riot police officers.
The congregation at Changchunli Church has always upheld truth, opposed evildoing, and done their best adhering to the principles of only depending on the Lord and observing government laws and relevant policies. Much gathering and praying occurred in the church building. On many occasions, petitions were made to the authorities of the Shandong Provincial Government, the State Council and other relevant government agencies so that the issues would be resolved, but nothing ever came out of their requests.

On September 23, 2010, the developer Wanda Company of Ji’nan began to build a church according to the original agreement, trying to implement it by force. Members of Changchunli Church built tents on the construction site in protest. Over 200 young people dressed in police uniforms and helmets, claiming to be police officers, suddenly attacked the people in the tents — mostly elderly people and women. They beat up the young believers and threw the elderly believers out of the tents. The tents were then destroyed, the believers were moved away, and the construction began by force.

Over 20 believers, mostly elderly people, were injured. One of the elderly women, a 74 year old believer, was struck blind in her left eye. Someone called the emergency number (120) and she was rushed to a hospital. Emergency police (110) were also summoned, but they arrived late to the scene. When they arrived, they stood by and watched and never asked the believers any questions. Instead, they laughed and casually talked with the developer and the perpetrators of violence. They even stood by and watched as six or seven of the young thugs attacked a young male believer, causing injuries to his head.

After the incident, the beaten believers went to the local police station to report the crime. The officers at the police station came up with various excuses and refused to tell the believers whether or not they would file a case. Some believers traveled to Beijing to petition the higher authorities there, but the Ji’nan Municipal Government sent officers there to ask the believers to return and to promise them a reply as soon as possible. So far they still have not received any response.

Some believers just received the news that the Municipal Public Security Bureau has confirmed a list of seven people who the police have identified as church leaders, and are currently being targeted for arrest.

We believe that everything that happens must be approved by the Lord, and everything is there because of the Him; everything is decided in the hands of the Lord. We only look up to the Lord and do as Christians should. We do not concern ourselves with anything else. We also hope you, brothers and sisters, pray not only on behalf of the Changchunli religious incident, but also for the revival of churches in Ji’nan and all churches in the world. Amen!
Immanuel,

The Congregation of Christian Changchunli Church of Ji’nan

Read previous press releases pertaining to Changchunli Church:
Urgent: Changchunli Church Members Targeted
Changchunli Church Members Attacked
State Religious Leaders and Government Officials Attempt to Forcibly Demolish Church in Shandong


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