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Persecution of Chinese church continues

Members of the Early Rain Covenant Church in Chengdu, Sichuan province, continue to face harassment as authorities attempt to shut down their unregistered congregation. While Wang Yi, the head pastor, is serving a nine-year prison sentence, other members of the church have also encountered persecution.

Since early June, church minister Wu Wuqing, his wife Xiong Meifang, and their children have been locked in their home by governing officials. The fire door, which gives access to the stairs and lift, has been chained, and guards remain posted outside the door. At the start, the guards would unlock the door if visitors came to see the family but on June 8 they turned a woman and her children away, stating that since visitors were prohibited from entering the residence, they would only be allowed to pass food through the fire door.

At the same time we thank God that yesterday Liao Qiang, a member of Early Rain, and his family arrived safely in the US where they will apply for asylum. Our partner Bob Fu of China Aid met them at the airport.

  • Pray for Wang Yi and members of the Early Rain church who are undergoing constant persecution from the authorities. Click here for his prisoner profile.
  • Remember Wu Wuqing, Xiong Meifang and their children in your prayers.
  • Thank God that Liao Qiang and his family will be able to make a new home for themselves in the US. Pray that they will be granted asylum.

UPDATE

The life sentence against Zafar Bhatti, a Christian in Pakistan convicted of sending blasphemous text messages, has been upheld by a court in Rawalpindi.

Zafar had been given the life sentence in 2017 under Pakistan’s widely misused blasphemy laws for allegedly sending text messages insulting Islam’s prophet. He continues to deny the charge.
 
On June 22, an additional sessions judge in Rawalpindi District upheld Zafar’s conviction even though new evidence presented by the prosecution again failed directly to link him with the alleged offence, according to his attorney.

Please pray for justice for Zafar and for all those who have been wrongly accused and convicted under the blasphemy laws. Click here for Zafar’s prisoner profile.

(Sources: China Aid, Early Rain Covenant Church, Morning Star News, VOM Canada, International Christian Concern)

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