Open Doors: China

EFFORTS OF CHINESE CHRISTIANS TO HELP QUAKE VICTIMS HAMPERED BY ARRESTS

“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”

– Galatians 6:2 [NIV]

China

Following the earthquake that hit Sichuan Province in China on May 12, a colleague travelled to a small town close to the epicentre to assess the needs. Here she gives an eyewitness account;

“I was first taken to a small town about 30 kilometres from the epicentre. Over 80 percent of the buildings in this town have collapsed; those that are still standing are unsafe and may collapse at any time.

“With at least five million people made homeless by the quake, the Chinese government is unable to quickly provide tents for all the victims. Out in a village, I met an elderly Christian man who is the leader of a house church. With sorrow on his face, he said to me, ‘I had used my whole life’s savings to build my house. But within just two minutes, it became a ruined heap before me.’

“I met another younger brother in Christ and asked him, ‘How is your family?’ Without any expression on his face, he replied, ‘Thank God, I merely lost a child in my family.’ The lack of emotion on his face shocked me. I wondered if he did not dare show any grief since he knew that there were many families far worse off because they lost more than one person.”

Many churches in China are sending volunteers to the disaster areas to help the victims. However some reports have been received that Christians are being stopped from sending money to the disaster area. In Henan province, seven house church members were arrested and charged with, ‘sending money to a disaster area in the name of a house church’. The police stated the believers will not be released until they pay a 1000 Yuan [around £75] fine. In a separate incident two more Christians in Hua county, Henan province were detained under the charge of religious inciting on obstruction to earthquake relief work.

Source: China Aid/Open Doors

Please pray…

  • Many churches are giving sacrificially to the disaster effort. Please pray that their witness is effective and many people are helped.
  • Pray for those believers in Henan province that have been detained that God would strengthen and encourage them
  • Pray for God’s provision for the five million people that lost their homes during the earthquake
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