Systematic persecution continues for Chinese Christians as new religious legislation approaches
As many as 50,000 Christians in China lifted their voices to the heavens at the Golden Lampstand Church in Linfen, China (#43 on the 2018 World Watch List, #WWL2018). Now, that seems like a long, long time ago.
As of Tuesday, Jan. 9, the well-known megachurch, which reportedly was built with nearly $3 million in contributions from local worshippers in one of China’s poorest regions, was a pile of dust and rubble after Chinese paramilitary forces reportedly used excavators and dynamite to destroy the church, and with it, the hopes and dreams of many believers in the area.
According to ChinaAid, a watchdog organization that keeps track of religious freedom in China, the police faction that destroyed the church reports to some of the country’s highest officials. China’s military police has been under the direct control of the central government since the head of the public security bureau, which previously commanded it, was arrested last year–indicating that the order to destroy the church came from China’s top officials instead of the less-powerful local authorities.