A member of the Born-Again movement from Anhui Province suffered constant persecution for his faith.
Last year in April, officers from the National Security Brigade and a local police station showed up at Cheng Lei’s home. They were there to escort Mr. Cheng and his parents to the station for interrogation. The family belongs to the Born-Again church and often hosts gatherings at their home.
The Born-Again movement, also known as All Range/Sphere, Full Scope and Word of Life Church or the Weepers, is a banned Christian group, included in the list of xie jiao (heterodox teaching) by the Chinese authorities.
While his parents were released the same day, Mr. Cheng was taken to a detention center where he was held for the next forty days. Even though he was released, he became a lifelong target of the authorities.
Months later in August, Mr. Cheng was traveling to Henan on a train. At night, he received a call from an official in the Public Security Bureau who accused him of fleeing. Soon after, a train attendant showed up to check his identification details.
The next morning, when the train reached its destination at 4 am, Mr. Cheng was arrested again. He was taken to a detention center and kept there for a month. After that, he was posted in a farm for reformation through labor.
He was released in March this year but still wasn’t given back his freedom. He had to check in at the local police station regularly, and if an officer were to show up at his home, he was expected to answer all his questions.
This constant harassment caused much anguish to Mr. Cheng on a personal level as well. His marriage has suffered and his mother’s health deteriorated.
Reported by Jiang Tao