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Discussion Forum : News and Current Events : Report on imprisoned Vietnamese pastors

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lwpray
Member



Joined: 2003/6/22
Posts: 3318
Sweden

 Report on imprisoned Vietnamese pastors




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Report on imprisoned Vietnamese pastors
Join in prayer and fasting

Family members were recently allowed to visit some of the six Mennonite leaders arrested in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. On August 23, the mother of two of the men was allowed to visit for the first time since their arrest on March 2. According to an August 26 report from Compass Direct, her visit was cut short when one of the brothers described the beatings experienced by the other brother. The mother said that her son, Nguyen Thanh Nhan was in reasonably good spirits, but his older brother, Nguyen Huu Nghia, was in a very fragile emotional state. A leading human rights activist, Rev. Nguyen Hong Quang, has been allowed two visits by his wife since his arrest on June 8.

While the rest have all been allowed at least one visit, the one woman of the six, Le Thi Hong Lien, has not been allowed visitors. Police explained to her family that she is ”hard-headed and uncooperative.”
Sources for Christian Solidarity Worldwide report that authorities are working hard to expedite the trial of Rev. Quang, which may begin in early September. The other five are expected to face relatively minor charges.

Vietnam has consistently oppressed Christians throughout the country, despite constitutional assurances of religious freedom. On June 18, the National Assembly Standing Committee adopted the Ordinance on Beliefs and Religions which ”sets out concrete details of citizens’ freedom of belief and religion, and establishes a legal framework that helps keep activities relating to belief and religion open and staying within the bounds of the law

While the document initially appears to guarantee significant freedoms, it requires that religious freedom be in conformity with the state. For example, the freedom of religious beliefs and activities can be suspended if ”they negatively affect the unity of the people or the nation’s fine cultural traditions.” This ordinance is due to come into effect on November 15.

Vietnamese church leaders are calling upon their congregations to devote three days each month (September 5-7, October 3-5 and November 7-9) to fast and pray:
1. that the Almighty Lord would continue to protect and vindicate the Church (Acts. 5:38,39).
2. that all believers in local areas would faithfully gather to worship the Lord and stand firm in all circumstances (Acts. 5:41-42).
3. that all leaders of the churches, all leaders of small groups, all of the hosts of the families would have the wisdom and courage needed to lead the flock (Acts. 4:29-30).
4. that as soon as possible, the government of all levels from the central to local throughout Vietnam will know God’s Sovereignty so that they will withdraw the decree issued in 18-06-2004, that they would give up the prejudices towards the Church, and stop all forms of persecutions and hindrances to Church’s activities (1Timothy 2:1-2; Proverbs 21: 1).

We encourage you to join your brothers and sisters in Vietnam during these days for prayer and fasting.
Continue to pray for physical and emotional strength for Pastor Quang and the others in prison for their faith in Vietnam.
Pray that they will be released soon.
Pray that the international community will continue to pressure the government of Vietnam to respect the rights of its citizens.


From the news flow at Intercessors Network


_________________
Lars Widerberg

 2004/9/2 0:58Profile
hredii
Member



Joined: 2004/8/1
Posts: 218
Fresno CA

 Re: Report on imprisoned Vietnamese pastors

Please pray, pray. Oh please pray for them as if it was your church that was being threatened to be closed down and made ilegal. There might be a time in the future that our church will become an ilegal act. So please pray for them.


_________________
Adam Fell

 2004/10/6 2:38Profile
lwpray
Member



Joined: 2003/6/22
Posts: 3318
Sweden

 Re: Report on imprisoned Vietnamese pastors



Perils to members of the Body demand concern, concentration, and consecration to a committed plan of prayer.
Leonard Ravenhill


_________________
Lars Widerberg

 2004/10/6 3:26Profile
hredii
Member



Joined: 2004/8/1
Posts: 218
Fresno CA

 Re: Report on imprisoned Vietnamese pastors

Here is an update

PERSECUTION OF THE VIETNAMESE MENNONITE CHURCH
The well-publicized conviction and sentencing of six Vietnamese Mennonites on 12 November 2004, on a ”criminal charge” seems to be considered by some as difficult to oppose because it involved a ”criminal charge”. Strangely, some diplomats and even some Mennonite groups seem to accept and be immobilized by the government’s consistent claim that ”it has nothing to do with religion”.

That this view is simply wrong is shown by the fact that from 10 November to 3 December 2004 the home/church of the Rev. Nguyen Hong Quang, cared for by his 30-year-old wife Le Thi Phu Dung, was invaded five times by gangs of uniformed and plain-clothes police, up to 40 at a time and sometime at midnight. This round of persecution began with a cultural revolution-style public accusation/humiliation session against Mrs. Quang. A recording of this session makes clear it is against the ”illegal Christian religion”. Authorities require Mrs. Quang to cease all religious gatherings, activities and ceremonies in the Quang house/church, and to take down the church sign. Videos of some of the police raids have also made their way to the West.

With the release of two of the six prisoners in early December, written testimonies of their unbelievable mistreatment while in custody became available. These reports in translation are available. Readers will agree that the treatment of the two brothers, Nhan and Nghia, is worthy of the Soviet Gulags. A 5 January 2005 press release of the Mennonite World Conference details some of the awful abuse.

Even more horrible is the complete crushing of the body, mind and spirit of the lone woman among the six prisoners, 21-year-old Le Thi Hong Lien. Physical and mental abuse by officials has caused Ms Lien to lose her mind and control over bodily functions. The poignant report and reflections of her poor, day-labourer father, written after his visit with her on 14 December, with additional information gleaned from previous prison visits, is also available. Her father has been denied any access to her since. On 7 January 2005, Amnesty International issued an urgent appeal on her behalf.

Government policy makers, business people and aid organizations wishing to do business with and help the people of Vietnam need to keep these realities firmly in mind when dealing with the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. Without clear international consequences for its gross misbehaviour toward is own peaceful citizens, Vietnam will have no incentive to change.


_________________
Adam Fell

 2005/1/20 20:25Profile





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