China Aid Association
Photo: Pastor “Bike” Zhang Mingxuan baptizes a house church Christian
(BEIJING — December 9, 2008) On December 4, 2008 Pastor “Bike” Zhang Mingxuan attempted to file an “Administrative Statement of Complaint” against the government decision to abolish the Chinese House Church Alliance, but the No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court of Beijing refused to accept the case. In support of the Chinese House Church Alliance, 15 Chinese Christian legal professionals and intellectuals have issued a formal solemn declaration against the actions of the Ministry of Civil Affairs, stating in part, “If this order of abolishment continues to be used in other expanded areas, this could well cause the abolishment of all the Christian house churches.”
The actions of Pastor Bike and the legal professionals are in protest of the measures taken by the Ministry of Civil Affairs against Pastor Bike and the Chinese House Church Alliance. On November 28, 2008, officials from the Ministry of Civil Affairs announced to Pastor Bike the “Decision Statement on Abolishment” of the Chinese House Church Alliance which reads:
“It has been found through investigations that the ‘Chinese House Church Alliance’ is not registered, and it engages in its activities in the name of a social organization without authorization. Pursuant to Article 35 of the ‘Regulation on Registration and Administration of Social Organizations,’ this agency has hereby made the decision to abolish the ‘Chinese House Church Alliance.’ — Public Seal of Ministry of Civil Affairs, November 28, 2008.”
The same morning the abolishment of the Chinese House Church Alliance was announced, officers arrested 17 Christians and an American reporter who were holding a prayer meeting in the residence of Pastor Bike. All the Christians were released that day, but officials confiscated more than 600 Bibles computers, VCD players and other personal property. All confiscated items were returned three days later except for the Bibles and Christian literature.
On December 4, Pastor Bike and his lawyer went to file the administrative statement at the No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court of Beijing. However, the court declined to accept the case, saying Pastor Bike cannot sue Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA). The reason given was that Pastor Bike cannot prove it was the MCA that orchestrated the events of November 28, because there was no legal document issued. Court officials said that it was possible the Public Security Bureau (PSB) that confiscated the property. After 20 minutes with the court officials, the case was still not filed successfully. It is believed that this is a tactic used by government officials to protect government interests and to delay responsible actions on this case.
Since ChinaAid has reported on Pastor Bike and his family, many from around the world have responded by speaking out on his behalf. Pastor Bike told ChinaAid recently that he has been encouraged by phone calls he has received from an official from the U.S. embassy in Beijing who expressed concern for him and his family on behalf of the U.S. embassy.
Thank you to all those who have supported Pastor Bike and the house church Christians of the Chinese House Church Alliance. ChinaAid calls on the international community to stand with Pastor Bike and the 15 legal professionals by petitioning the relevant agencies in China to protest the suppression of the Chinese House Church Alliance. The phone numbers and addresses of these agencies are:
The Ministry of Civil Affairs. Chen Chuanshu, Director of General Office. Yu Jianliang, Deputy Director of General Office. Tel: 010-58123032
Address of the Ministry of Civil Affairs: 147, Beiheyan Blvd., Dongcheng District, Beijing. Postal code: 100721. Tel: 010-58123114
State Administration for Religious Affairs. Guo Wei, Director of Foreign Affairs Department. Tel: 010-64095157
Ministry of Justice. Wang Lixian, Director of General Office. Tel: 010-65206706
Henan Province. Lu Wuwe, General Secretary of Provincial People’s Government.
To request permission to reproduce ChinaAid photos and/or information, please contact: [email protected].
Read the “Administrative Statement of Complaint” filed by Pastor “Bike” Zhang Mingxuan on behalf of the Chinese House Church Alliance against the Ministry of Civil Affairs.
Read the statement issued by 15 leading Chinese legal professionals and intellectuals titled “Solemn Declaration against Abolishment of the Chinese House Church Alliance by the Ministry of Civil Affairs.”
Read the Ministry of Civil Affair’s “Decision Statement on Abolishment” of the Chinese House Church Alliance.
China Aid Contacts
Rachel Ritchie, English Media Director
Cell: (432) 553-1080 | Office: 1+ (888) 889-7757 | Other: (432) 689-6985
Email: [email protected]