Zhichao and Da, his wife, with their two children.
|Receipt for seized property [Zhichao’s cell phone] Hongpailou police issued.
With the charge of “creating a disturbance” during this church crackdown, authorities ordered three-months of criminal detention. After this time, they forcibly expelled Zhichao back to ChongQing City, his hometown, issuing a one-year bail.
Despite this persecution, in response to God’s calling, Zhichao and his family risked secretly returning to Chengdu in June. During the following three months, authorities did not aggressively harass him. When Elder Yingqiang Li’s family also returned to Chengdu in September, however, police control gradually escalated.
When Early Rain Covenant Church held a secret servant leaders’ retreat in another city on October 4, authorities again summoned Zhichao for interrogation. Due to massive police harassment and monitoring, some servant leaders, including elder Yingqiang Li could not attend the retreat. After police identified all the attendees (approximately 40 adults and children) they drove to the location and recorded information obtained from the attendees’ IDs.
Zhichao wrote in his diary about this trying time: “Coming back to Chengdu means coming back to my church, my brothers and sisters, and the place where my pastors are imprisoned. I will carry the cross on my back and regard myself as a prisoner. Wherever God leads, I will follow and go with Him.”
Report by Yubing, special correspondent of ChinaAid Association.
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