Source: Direct Reports from China
Date: June 17, 2018
A small Three-Self Church in Nanhua community, Minquan County, the city of Shangqiu, Henan Province, fell victim to the Chinese Communist Party’s large-scale persecution of religions. The Three-Self Church is the government-controlled Protestant United organization, but this does not prevent the persecution of single Three-Self communities.
In the afternoon of April 11, 2018, two cars arrived at the church, and five men carrying angle grinders came out of the vehicles. They went straight to the roof of the church and started sawing off the cross. When the church director Zhang tried to stop them, a man threatened, “The government does not allow people to believe in God. It does not condone those who go to Three-Self Churches, either. Anyone who continues their belief will be arrested.”
On May 13, the local government posted a sign on the roof of the church: “Nanhua Community Party Service Center” and replaced the cross with a party emblem – the church became the office of the Chuwa Village Committee.
After Xi Jinping took office, the CCP’s persecution of religious beliefs continues to escalate, and the scope of persecution continues to expand. Determined to completely ban religious beliefs and turn China into an atheist state, the government is seizing and destroying Three-Self and other churches, arrests and persecutes believers of all faiths.
More from my site
Bitter Winter plans to report on how religions are allowed, or not allowed, to operate in China and how some are severely persecuted after they are labeled as “xie jiao,” or heterodox teachings. We plan to publish news difficult to find elsewhere, analyses, and debates.
Placed under the editorship of Massimo Introvigne, one of the most well-known scholars of religion internationally, “Bitter Winter” is a cooperative enterprise by scholars, human rights activists, and members of religious organizations persecuted in China (some of them have elected, for obvious reasons, to remain anonymous).