Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Picture Story of the Persecution on Linfen Church

In the early hours of September 13, 2009, 400 local police, government officials, and hired vandals attacked Fushan House Church, demolishing the new church building and damaging the Good News Cloth Shoes Factory in Linfen City, Shanxi.

Church members who were sleeping at the construction site were brutally beaten with bricks and clubs.

As the day broke, hundreds of believers from the 50,000-member Linfen Church network, rushed to the aid of the injured.

More than 30 church members had to be hospitalized in critical condition.

Those left standing sustained brutal beatings, leaving blood staining the remains of the building site.

The attackers showed no mercy for the young and old alike. One governing official shouted unabashedly, "Strike Everything! We will pay for it!"

Local Fushan County officials prohibited hospitals from giving the victims blood transfusions, forcing them to transfer to regional hospitals for care.

21 victims remain in critical condition today.

The unprecedented attack on the Fushan Church marked a bloody escalation of persecution against the 30 sister churches in the Linfen House Church network.

The attackers smashed appliances, looted valuables, and seized and destroyed personal items, including Bibles and Sunday school materials printed by the church.

Shattering the windows, doors, and machinery of the Good News factory, the attackers destroyed one of Linfen Church's primary sources of income.

Access to the factory site was closed off, with power, water, and all communications severed to Fushan and neighboring Linfen churches.

Two bulldozers decimated the foundations of the new Fushan Church building.

When the dust settled, 17 buildings at the factory complex had been reduced to rubble, the new church building a heap of brick and metal.

Before leaving, Fushan County officials "cleaned up" some of the mess, using the bulldozers to clear debris. The tracks left behind tell the true story. 

The next day, members of Jindengtai "Golden Lampstand" Church held a prayer rally for the victims of the Fushan Church attack. Despite police threats, more than 1,000 prayed together in the rain.

Days later, state military police stood 24-hour guard around the Linfen church buildings, barring believers from worshipping in their churches. When Fushan County officials banned Linfen Church, the Linfen Leaders planned to file a complaint with the Central Government.

On September 19, 2009, Fushan officials led covert negotiations with Linfen Pastor Yang Rongli and two staff. They offered the church 1.4 million Yuan to keep silent about the attack, but would not lift the church ban. Yang and the others refused the offer.

Pastors Yang Rongli (L) and her husband Wang Xiaoguang (R) were detained on September 25, 2009, with six other church leaders to prevent them from filing their complaint. 

Over the next two weeks, more leaders were harassed in order to break the spirit of the church. By November, ten remained illegally detained, including Yang Xuan (L) and his wife, Yang Caizhen (R).

With no warning, the family members of five prisoners were advised on November 2nd to hire legal counsel for the trial, to be held November 25th. They scrambled to hire defense lawyers on short notice.

As they prepared for the trial, the families were subjected to police surveillance in their homes. All but 4 family members in total were denied permits to attend the trial.

The show-trial lasted only one day—with all five leaders receiving criminal sentences in the end. Yang Rongli received the most severe sentence of 7-years imprisonment and a 30,000 Yuan fine.

On November 30, 2009, the five remaining Linfen church leaders were sentenced to two years of Re-Education through Labor each. Sustaining beatings and torture in prison, all ten have begun their appeals—in faithful pursuit of justice and religious freedom.


I commend you dear people who are being persecuted for the name of Jesus, because it proves that the enemy cannot win. He has already lost the victory, because we serve a living, most Holy God who cares for everyone even the worst sinner. Keep beleiving and we will be praying for you, and claiming a victory that you will be set free, "Whom the Son sets free is Free indeed. " Love to you,
The Intercessors of the Northern Maine.

I'm praying and will be sending letters to each of these dear brothers and sisters in Christ.

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Please be strong while you have so many troubles, it is amazing to see how much you care about those who were hurt and to see you are still firm in your faith even while you are suffering.

-Kyle Enderland, citizen of the United States of America.

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