Source: Direct Reports from China
Date: June 15, 2018
The increased crackdown on religion this year in China does not only restricts believers from following their faith but also severely infringes on individual liberties. The Communist Party’s draconian measures are pervasive, quite often bordering on totalitarian.On March 18, 2018, five policemen from the Xi County Police Station in the city of Xinyang, Henan Province, came to a Three-Self Church. They burned all religious portal paintings and couplets in the church and ordered the believers to hand over their Bibles, threatening, “Whoever keeps the Bible will be fined; whoever brings minors under the age of 18 to the church will be fined from 100,000 to 200,000 yuan. Failure to pay will result in detention and disobedience will result in imprisonment.” Since then, plain-clothes policemen have been monitoring the church at each gathering. Pastors and elders are forbidden to preach the authentic understanding of the Bible – they can only speak about the sermonic contents prescribed by the CCP. Believers are forbidden to read the Bible in private; the offenders will be fined if found out.
On the morning of May 6, a believer was moved to tears when singing praises to the Lord at the church. Plain-clothes policemen on surveillance at the church reproached him, “You are not allowed to thank and worship the Lord. Thank the Communist Party instead!” The police barred the believers from testifying about healing their sickness through prayer or thank and praise the Lord Jesus. When Party authorities came to the church for inspections, the police demanded the believers unite in giving thanks to the CCP.