Xuzhou Presbyterian Church raided during service
04/11/2021 China (International Christian Concern) – A Presbyterian church in Xuzhou, China was raided on October 31 during a Sunday service. The pastor and four members of the house church were taken away, while others present saw their personal information confiscated by the police.
According to China Aid, local authorities in Xuzhou, Jiangsu Province, raided the Dao-en Presbyterian Church last Sunday while the service was taking place. Pastor Fang Xiaojun and four Christians were taken to the local police station.
As an uncontrolled church, the Dao-en Presbyterian Church is no stranger to persecution. In August 2018, the Tongshan District Ethnic and Religious Affairs Bureau interrupted Sunday service at the church’s south campus and issued an administrative sanction notice to Pastor Fang and preacher Ma Ben. Since then, the church has often been looted.
On August 2, 2020, Pastor Fang and some members gathered at the home of a worshiper, while others attended Sunday worship service online. The police raided the house and took Pastor Fang away. He was not released until noon that day.
Pastor Fang has a reputation for standing with the persecuted. He visited the highly targeted Early Rain Covenant Church (ERCC) in Chengdu after the crackdown on December 9, 2018. He is also a close friend of Elder Zhang Chunlei, a church leader in Guiyang detained for his identity and his religious activities on March 16, 2021. He made a promise to Elder Zhang, ERCC Elder Li Yingqiang, and Pastor Huang Xiaoning of another persecuted man. at the church in Guangzhou, that if one of them was imprisoned, they would pray together at 5 p.m.
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