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 That the whereabouts of
Christian lawyers such as Gao
Zhisheng would be known
 Those in prison would be
strong in the Lord, know His
presence and reach many
with the gospel
 Those persecuting the church
would come to repentance
and faith
he’s alive
is enough’
August 13 marked the
sixth anniversary of the
forced disappearance of
Christian human rights
lawyer Gao Zhisheng (pictured).
Gao is a renowned human rights
lawyer, who defended underground
house church Christians. For nearly
six years, his whereabouts have
been unknown.
From 2006 authorities constantly
detained and tortured him but
according to Geng He, his wife, the
persecution intensified in 2007.
‘Gao Zhisheng published an open
letter to the US Congress, in which
[he] pointed out that the Chinese
Communist Party (CCP) was a
criminal gang in the guise of a state,’
she testified to a US Sub-committee
this year. ‘From that day on, Gao
Zhisheng was never free again until
August 2017, when he was illegally
kidnapped by the CCP.’
She asked the US embassy in China
to visit her husband and confirm
his condition. However, she
recognised her requests might not
be possible and added: ‘It’s okay to
have [Gao] give me a call and tell
me he’s still alive. Just knowing he’s
alive is enough.’
Two pastors and one co-worker of
Linfen Covenant House Church
were arrested for so-called ‘fraud’.
The CCP are accusing church
‘Prison is where I
meet with God’
workers of fraud in order to
criminalise tithing and offerings.
Recently, attorneys visited the
three prisoners, Pastor Li Jie,
Pastor Han Xiaodong and co-
worker Wang Qiang, who all face
this charge.
However, during the visit Pastor
Han reflected on his circumstances.
‘Persecution is a blessing,’ he said.
‘One day, we will all understand that
all of these are meaningful.’
‘Please trust I’m free,’ Li told his
wife. ‘The prison is where I meet
with God and experience His Grace!’
Linfen church was persecuted for
refusing to join China’s official
Three-Self Patriotic Movement
church. During an outdoor family
camp in August 2022, police raided
the event and arrested members of
the congregation, including Li, Han
and Wang.
Similarly, 12 leaders of Linfen
Golden Lampstand Church were
also arrested for fraud. In July
Golden Lampstand reported that
two of them, husband-and-wife
pastors Wang Xiaoguang and Yang
Rongli, miss each other greatly.
They are older and relatively weak
physically. The families involved
in this case are understood to
be facing significant pressure to
confess to fraud.
As of September 2023, there
had been no update concerning
Wang Yi, the pastor of Early Rain
Covenant Church, except for a
visit from his wife, Jiang Rong, in
October 2021. At that time, Wang
was healthy and allowed to read in
his room.
Wang, who was vocal about how
the church should be separate from
the CCP, was arrested in 2018 for
‘inciting subversion of state power’
and ‘illegal business operations’.
During his sermons, he regularly
called upon China’s premier, Xi
Jinping, to repent.
The outside world knows little
about his situation in prison, while
Early Rain leaders continue to face
relentless persecution, such as
interrogations, surveillance and
detentions. However, they remain
resolute in their faith.
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