October 18, 2010
BEIJING — On October 17 at 12 p.m., over 30 house church Christians who were barred from attending the Lausanne Congress met at a hotel in Beijing. Their gathering was raided by the police and most of them have been sent home by the officials representing their respective local police stations.
Pastor Jin Tianming (Shouwang Church), Pastor Jin Mingri (Zion Church), Pastor Fang Bing (BCD Church) and Pastor Li Shengfeng (Urban Revival Church) were part of the group at the hotel. Four members of China’s Organizational Planning Committee for the Lausanne Congress were also picked up by police. According to the pastors’ family, the pastors will be detained until October 25 — the last day of the Lausanne Congress.
According to inside sources, this group of pastors who gathered together were all invited delegates of the Lausanne Congress. They were all blocked by customs officials in Beijing. To avoid further harassment by police, they stayed at the Hilton Beijing Capital Airport hotel and sent out a letter to the Lausanne Congress in South Africa. After sending the letter, they went to Oriental Sun City International Hotel in Shunyi where they conducted a worship service and Bible study.
During their time of worship, about 10 agents from the Domestic Security Protection Squad broke in and stopped them, charging them with holding an illegal gathering. Most of them were sent to their homes. The above-mentioned pastors and three delegates of the Lausanne Congress, including Pastor Wang Shuangyan, were seized by police and taken to an undisclosed location.
In another development, on October 17, a member of a church in Beijing went on a business trip to Shanxi. She later attended a church gathering at Shanxi Agricultural University in Taigu, Taiyuan with a missionary. At 7 o’clock in the evening, officers from Taiyuan Municipal Domestic Security Protection Squad, police officers, and security guards suddenly broke in and forcibly took the worshippers away; not one of the 30 participants of the gathering escaped. These participants were held by police for over three hours and were not released until after 10 o’clock at night.
After Liu Xiaobo won the Nobel Peace Prize, the government of China again embarrassed themselves by showing their staunch opposition to the award given him. Now, China has seriously violated their citizens’ freedom of belief by preventing invited delegates from attending the Lausanne Congress and from having exchanges with other churches in the world. First, they violated the rights of a political rights advocate, now they are violating the rights of the religious. What image is the Chinese Communist government trying to portray?
In the midst of the recent persecution against house church Christians, ChinaAid calls on the relevant government offices to right the wrongs done to these citizens of China and restore their rights. We call for all who desire justice and truth to stand firm in their convictions, and for Christians to support these suppressed brothers and sisters through prayer.
China Aid Contacts
Rachel Ritchie, English Media Director
Cell: (432) 553-1080 | Office: 1+ (888) 889-7757 | Other: (432) 689-6985
Email: [email protected]