Authorities Raid Chinese House Church During Sunday Service, Confiscate Bibles and Cellphones

Detainees were forced to wear prison uniforms.

Local authorities on Nov.15 raided a church in Taiyuan, Shanxi province during its Sunday service, before detaining the preacher and six other members.

According to International Christian Concern (ICC) www.persecution.org at around 9:20 a.m., a team of officials hailing from the public security bureau, ethnic and religious affairs bureau, ministry of civil affairs, and police station raided Xuncheng Church as the service was underway. The public security commander went straight to the pulpit and confiscated the cell phone of the presider, before demanding that brother Zhang Chenghao go with them.

Next, the commander requested that the preacher, An Yankui, engage with them, to which An responded, “We are in the middle of our worship; please wait until our service is over.” The task force complied.

After the service, the commander and the staff from the ethnic and religious affairs bureau questioned An’s qualifications as a preacher. They wondered whether his credentials were approved by the state and whether their gathering was registered with the government.

Unsatisfied by his answers, the task force demanded to take An away. In turn, the churchgoers asked for proper legal documents for their actions, to which the team only showed a disbandment notice from the religious affairs bureau instead of an arrest warrant. They also failed to show a summons letter and claimed that they were doing so verbally.

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SOURCE: Assist News