(Xining, Qinghai—May 5, 2017) After previously banning meetings and services for Huoquan Christian Church in China’s remote western Qinghai province, police officers locked the church’s pastor in his own home to keep him from holding service on April 30.
Huoquan Christian Church is a church with a long and prosperous history, boasting approximately 300 regular members. The church has met for 15 years. However, about a month ago, the church became a target of government attention and persecution.
On March 23, 12 government officers from the local religious affairs and public security bureaus visited the church and told Huoquan’s pastor, Li Mutian, to “suspend all gatherings” and close the church and all its branches or face consequences.
When Li refused to comply, 10 officers from the national security brigade, religious affairs bureau, and the subdistrict office returned to the church on April 1 and issued an ultimatum document entitled “The Decision on Closing Huoquan Church.” Church members were told that any who defied the orders would be criminally liable.
ChinaAid reports on government persecution against house churches like Huoquan Christian Church and pastors like Li Mutian, in order to expose religious freedom abuses in China and promote human rights.