China Aid Association
(SHANDONG – July 14, 2009) ChinaAid has received two recent reports of persecution of house church Christians in Shandong province. In Tengzhou city, a Christian youth camp was raided on July 13, and five Christians were sentenced to administrative detention, including a 16-year-old youth. In Dongyong city, a house church was raided and abolished on July 5.
Christian Youth Camp Raided in Tengzhou City; 5 Christians Sentenced to Detention
On July 13 at 10:30 a.m. (Beijing time) town police and State Security Brigade officers surrounded a Christian youth camp and arrested 28 Christian youth and four adult church workers in Hubin town, Tengzhou city, Shandong province.
Authorities confiscated the Christians’ property, including projectors, televisions, computers, computer tables, musical instruments, audio equipment, furniture and other items. The police also seized the students’ mobile phones, Bibles and other daily necessities. One eyewitness told ChinaAid that during the raid, the police told the Christian leaders that, “It is forbidden for those under 18 to believe Christianity, and even those above 18 years old are not allowed to organize or participate in religious activities without permission.”
The police interrogated, threatened and beat Christian youth in the Hubin police station, then released the majority of Christians. However, the five Christians who organized the camp, including one who is 16 years old, are still being held by the Tengzhou Public Security Bureau. The police did not provide the five Christians with food or water for almost two days, and the Christians were suffering from hunger and dehydration. Around 4:30 p.m. on July 14, church members who realized the situation immediately delivered bread and water to the prison. On July 14, authorities sentenced each of the five Christians to 5-15 days of administrative detention for “engaging in illegal activities.” On the administrative detention notices, the Bible is listed as evidence for this charge.
Church members have also sought the return of their property that was confiscated during the raid on the camp. The Christians report that the officials refused, and said, “No way; we’ll keep more than 90 percent.”
ChinaAid contacts ask for prayer for the Christian youth who are still in a state of shock, and for the five Christians in prison. They are:
• Mr. Wang Chang-Yin, born 1971, sentenced to 15 days of administrative detention
• Mr. Qiu Jia-Cun, born 1965, sentenced to 10 days of administrative detention
• Mr. Gong Cun-Ling, born 1985, sentenced to 5 days of administrative detention
• Miss Wang Si-Ping, born 1990, sentenced to 5 days of administrative detention
• Mr. Shao Yuji, born 1993, sentenced to 5 days of administrative detention
House Church Raided and Abolished in Dongyong City
While house church believers were worshipping in Dongyong city, Shandong province on July 5, Public Security Bureau (PSB) and Religious Affairs Bureau (RAB) officials raided the meeting. Officials accused them of “disturbing social order” for organizing a religious service for more than 40 people in a home, and abolished the house church. The house church was meeting at apartment number 102, Building 32, No. 10 Branch, Jinan Military Regiment, Xinanhe town, Hekou district, Dongyong city, Shandong province. The city of Dongyong, Shandong is a sister city of Midland, Texas.
Contact the Chinese embassy on behalf of Christians in Shandong. Urge the government officials immediately release the five Christians being held in Tengzhou, and that the house church believers be allowed to meet freely in Dongyong and Tengzhou.
Ambassador Zhou Wenzhong
3505 International Place, NW, Washington, D.C. 20008
Tel: (202) 495-2000
Fax: (202) 588-9760
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