■ Two Chinese house church pastors have joined forces to train a group of missionaries to fearlessly share the Gospel to North Koreans.
In an interview with China Aid, the two Christians who wished to remain anonymous shared the difficulties they faced as they tried to spread Christianity to North Koreans.
The two pastors are training missionaries to preach the Gospel in North Korea, but they also have a ministry to evangelize to North Koreans who are living in China.
The lack of food and medicine have forced some North Koreans to risk their lives and take the dangerous journey across the Tumen River to go to China. The trek is considered illegal, and refugees risk getting shot by border patrol officers.
Many have turned to human traffickers who take advantage of the women and sell them into prostitution or marriages with Chinese men.
|Inscription stone marking the border of China and North
Korea in Jilin. (Wikimedia commons/Prince Roy)
The pastors revealed that it is difficult to evangelize to the North Koreans because of the language barrier. They arranged for South Korean pastors to preach to them, but they had to stop when they were accused of associating with Christians overseas, who were suspected of introducing foreign ideas into China.
They said that some of the North Korean men who flee to China eventually leave because they cannot survive in the country, but many of the girls have stayed. Some girls marry local men, have children, and learn the language. The pastors try to earn their trust by providing courses and helping them solve their problems in life.
“The North Koreans are hard to change, and they have this dark side of human nature. Even if we clothe them and feed them, after a while, they will still turn against us and do bad things to us,” one of the pastors told China Aid.
One of them was arrested by the authorities when he was caught providing North Korean women with boarding and food. As a result, the pastors changed their method of evangelizing to North Koreans. Instead of waiting for them to come to China, they are now sending missionaries to North Korea to preach the Gospel.
The pastors said that they do not fear to go to North Korea as missionaries, even though they know that Christians are often mistreated in the country.
“[T]heir team is training [missionaries] who are fearless and also don’t have family. Like, they’re single, they’re not married yet, but they’re ready to lay down their lives for Christ at any time if they ever go to [North] Korea and meet any bad situations,” a translator relayed to China Aid.
North Korea has held the top rank in the Open Doors World Watch List as the most dangerous country to live as a Christian for 14 consecutive years.