The following is an unedited press release from International Christian Concern (ICC). Links in the press release are to ICC web pages. Also, please check out their website at www.persecution.org for more on the persecution and genocide of Christians around the world.
Preachers from Zion Church in Beijing Arrested, Detained
The Disbanded House Church Continues to Face Persecution
05/04/2021 China (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on April 28, two preachers from the Beijing-based Zion Church were taken from their homes and put in detention.
According to urgent prayer requests sent out by the now disbanded house church, local police removed preacher Qie Jiafu from his home in Changping district at 11:30 pm on April 28 for the purpose of interrogation. Despite multiple phone calls to the Shahe Police Station, Zion Church members were unable to learn about the motive behind Qie’s detention.
Qie’s wife received only one phone call from police at 1:00 a.m. on April 30, informing her that Qie was placed under a 10-day administrative detention for violating Art.54 of the Regulations on Administrative Penalties for Public Security. He was also fined 500 Yuan (77 USD).
Preacher Huang Chunzi’s detention, despite taking place at the same time, was only discovered three days later, and her church was occupied with assisting Qie’s family.
The last time her church members heard from her was on April 28, when she notified them that local authorities were at her door. She soon went missing.
After being detained for more than 72 hours, local authorities still have not notified her only contactable family member. They also refused to reveal the why, when, and where of her detention.
The church is asking for prayers so that Preacher Huang will be given all the strength she needs from the Lord, and that the Lord will make way so the church can gain current updates. They also pray for sufficient grace for Preacher Qie and the many servants who are paying the price for Christ in this day and age.
Zion Church, established in 2007, used to be the largest house church in Beijing, drawing 1,500 congregants every Sunday. The church was shut down in September 2018 and legally banned as it was accused of “conducting unauthorized activities and disturbing social order under the name of civil organization.”
Zion Church Pastor Ezra Jin Mingri has been banned from leaving the country for nearly three years, while his daughter Grace Jin shares the same fate – she failed to join her law school in the states in July 2019 due to the travel restrictions placed on her by the authorities.
Gina Goh, ICC’s Regional Manager for Southeast Asia, said, “The arbitrary arrests of the two Zion Church preachers indicate Beijing’s intention to root out house churches. Along with the ‘Administrative Measures for Religious Clergy,’ which came into effect on May 1, the Chinese government wants all religious leaders to submit to the Chinese Communist Party’s leadership and its ideology. Those who do not will face persecution. The ongoing crackdown against Christianity in China deserves the world’s attention.”