China Aid Association
(HENAN — February 24, 2009) Due to media attention, worldwide prayer and other international pressure from ChinaAid readers, as of February 20, four house church leaders who were arrested in Nanyang, Henan province were released. The released church leaders said that they are very thankful for the calls and pressure from the international community that resulted in their release..
On February 11, at 5 p.m., more than 60 church leaders, along with two South Korean pastors, were arrested by local police in Wolong district, Nanyang city. The house church leaders came from four provinces to attend a seminar. The leaders were all evangelical Christians from different house church groups. The two South Korean pastors, whose last names are Kim and Chang, came as speakers. More than 30 police from Nanyang Public Security Bureau (PSB) and (NSB) broke into the meeting place, arresting all those in attendance and escorting them to Nanyang Jingda Hotel. Police took away all their personal belongings, including money, cell phones, books, bags and daily necessities. They did not give the house church leaders receipts for confiscated items. Police forced each person to register and to pay a fine. Police then released some of the elderly believers.
Nanyang authorities summoned police from the home provinces of the arrested Christians. The provincial police were given authority to escort the Christians back to their home cities to be held in detention in local facilities. The two South Korean pastors were expelled from China on February 14 for “engaging in illegal religious activities” and have been banned from returning to China for five years.
When ChinaAid received the report, six of the more than 60 leaders were still in prison. After ChinaAid sent press releases in Chinese and English, authorities received calls, e-mails, faxes and letters from ChinaAid supporters and foreign journalists. By February 20, the remaining imprisoned leaders were released.
ChinaAid, together with the house church leaders arrested in Nanyang, thank all who prayed and spoke out. Your actions directly impacted the lives of the leaders and their families for freedom, as well as demonstrating to the Chinese authorities that the international community will hold them accountable for their actions against house church Christians.
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China Aid Contacts
Rachel Ritchie, English Media Director
Cell: (432) 553-1080 | Office: 1+ (888) 889-7757 | Other: (432) 689-6985
Email: [email protected]