April 27, 2010
SHANDONG–In February of this year, the Huaiyin District Office for Ethnic and Religious Affairs of Jinan Municipality officially ordered the abolition of the Jinan Seventh-Day Adventist Church, forcing the church’s landlord to terminate the rental agreement on the church’s gathering site. This latest intrusion and government action against the 7th Day Adventist congregation on February 27 forced the 39-year-old church change locations again, a persistent struggle throughout the church’s history. Some members of the congregation refuse to leave continue to gather at the site. Recently, ChinaAid received the following letter from the Jinan 7th Day Adventist Church for prayer:
Dear brothers and sisters,
Please pray for us, as we have received an ultimatum, and this is the last week we are allowed to gather here. We are very concerned about the recent earthquake disaster in our country. We, the brothers and sisters of the (Jinan 7th Day Adventist Church) have actively donated to and prayed for the disaster-stricken areas. We love our country so much and are so attentive to the development of our country. Yet, we are persecuted over and over again for this.
The Shizhong District Branch of Jinan Municipal Public Security Bureau found our landlord and told him to drive us out. The Huaiyin District Office for Ethnic and Religious Affairs has repeatedly exerted pressure on Zhangzhuang Brigade, and the brigade spoke with the landlord on many occasions, demanding that he terminate the rental agreement. We, the several hundred believers, will very soon face the situation of not having a place to gather together for worship. In spite of their advanced age and poor health, the heads of our church have, on many occasions, spoken with the agency in charge of this matter, and each time they were answered with pressure or crackdowns by law enforcement.
We hereby ask you, brothers and sisters of the world, to pray for us and to pray for our compatriots in the disaster-stricken areas. We further request prayer for the rulers of our country and for the people of our country.
Read the Jinan Church Statement
ChinaAid hereby expresses its concern on this matter and appeals to the Jinan authorities to protect the religious freedom of these believers in accordance with the law. We urge the Jinan government to protect the rights of its people and to address the humanitarian concerns of the devastating earthquake’s victims in Shandong.
Jinan 7th Day Adventists Evicted from Church, Call for Prayer