Local authorities in parts of China are organizing “alternative” events nearby the places of worship in an attempt to deter people from participating in religious activities.
Since September, the United Front Work Department (UFWD) has launched its first-ever nationwide supervision program initiated by the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee to check on the implementation of religious policies in provinces and municipalities across the country.
Facing increasing surveillance and persecutions, believers are forced to come up with inventive ways to continue practicing their faith and dodge arrests.
An internal document from one of the municipalities in this northern province reveals a score-based motivational system for government and Communist Party personnel involved in the crackdown on churches. Top scores are given for the extinction of underground Catholics.
Even members of government-approved churches are not speared harassment from authorities and seek refuge in other provinces of China where the crackdown on religion is less intense.