[img]http://www.sermonindex.net/images/forum/2004/may/featured_news.gif[/img]Chinese communist authorities arrested 50 house church leaders from more than 20 provinces at a retreat in Hebei Province.Some were beaten during the Oct. 20 raid, reported China Aid Association.According to an eyewitness report, the leaders, from independent house churches outside government control, planned to discuss how to help the poor, orphaned and the floating population in urban areas.Public Security Bureau of the city of Baoding and government religious affairs officials made the arrrests.One of the church leaders, Dai Hong, was beaten by an officer named Tang, China Aid said.
_________________SI Moderator - Greg Gordon
[img]http://www.sermonindex.net/images/forum/2004/may/featured_news.gif[/img]Church leaders freed after U.S. pressureChinese communist authorities arrested 50 house church leaders from more than 20 provinces at a retreat in Hebei Province, but according to a report, all were released today after pressure from U.S. officials.As WorldNetDaily reported earlier today, some of the Christians were beaten during the Oct. 20 raid by Public Security Bureau of the city of Baoding and government religious affairs officials, reported China Aid Association.According to a reliable source from a high-level government agency, the release was ordered from the Chinese central government because of increasing international pressure on this case.After China Aid released news of the arrest yesterday, an aide of Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., at the House International Relations Committee contacted the State Department to urge action.
It's often that we look in horror at the attacks on the Christian Church, or on Christians around us. But sometimes, persecution isn't such a bad thing.I'm not saying that we should throw a party at the news of our brothers and sisters' sufferings, but I believe that something is to be praised: Persecution breeds a real faith!Not only in the lives of those who we read about, but, by example, those who even live in places of persecution are less likely to have an empty faith.I compare North Korea to many churches here in the U.S., for example. You probably know what I'm talking about when you meet so many people here who claim to be Christians, who sometimes even go to Church on Sunday, but have no faith! They don't care about Christ! What is their faith? What is their salvation? It's nothing! But Persecution makes one thing clear: If you're willing to claim a faith that you will be persecuted for, you had better believe it, and live it to be worth dying for!Again, I want to be careful- this world is amazing in how obviously it is not for Christ, and that is nothing to rejoice in. But as James writes, "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking in anything."Grace and Peace...
Underground Churches in North Korea This is the message delivered of North Koreans from their underground churches.I am Pastor Youngsik Kim in charge of Yerang Missionary for evangelization of North Korea and China.The objective of delivering this message is to encourage all the Christians in the world to pray for our brothers and sisters who are subject to severe affliction and even death sentences due to nothing but believing in Jesus Christ.Please read it through with the love of Jesus Christ even when it might not be interesting to you.Pastor Youngsik Kim We became successful in meeting with the leaders of the North Korean underground churches in a foreign country. We have been in indirect contact with them for several years. The stumps of faith!As eyewitnesses the living Christians in North Korea, we had no choice but to burst tears. These tears made it very sure to us that the Christian from North and South Korea are brothers to each other.I heard of incredible facts far beyond description. The North Korean brothers who have lived under affliction for more than 50 years! I became ashamed of my faith with consideration of their Christian remarkable lives. I heard of their own testimonies on how much the God took care of the Christians under the affliction by the North Korean government. Bong-Soo Church and Chil-Gok Church in PyongYang, the Capitol of North Korea, are administrated by the government and all the members of these churches are from the Communist Party. These camouflaged members and churches were made so as to draw financial aid from foreign Christian organizations. It was heard that all the offerings to PyongYang Chosun Christian Union from the churches in North Korea were transferred to Jung-il Kim for his pocket money. North Korean Christians testified that it was the saddest situation just to look at the cross of the Bong-Soo Church, weeping, but not to worship inside there. They have been overcoming extremely severe distress, poverty, and hunger. Nevertheless, they have been praying and are prepared to build up the church of God if it is allowed by God.They also said,We well know where all the churches destroyed in the past were.We will build every one of them up with the consent of God.We have been praying and preparing for it with firm and steady determination.Please pass these words to the brothers and sisters in South Korea. They also said,None of our brothers of faith have starved to death.We have helped each of us in need with tithe.Although we can not gather for worship, we have not missed a day without the Lords prayer and the Apostles Creed. It seemed to me that the Christians in North Korea are ready to walk with the Lord Jesus Christ. They are the children of God who overcame the sufferings. I was able to see the power of God through their lives.We made an offer of 1000 suits of winter clothes, shoes, medical supplies, 3 tons of rice and books. But, they did not want to accept them. They did not want any material. We were careful not to hurt their feeling as if it was our showing-off to those who admirably endured even without these materials. Finally, we were able to hand over these materials to them with extremely humble attitude, saying,These are the gift of love from South Korean brothers to North Korean brothers.At the same time, these are offerings from South Korean churches to North Korean churches.They burst joyful tears and left, saying,Thank you very much for considering us. Lets pray with love for each other everyday from now on. Intercessors Network
Hey, pastor Kim, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to insult you and say that this issue isn't important. I simply meant that persecution has a way of bringing out the "hero" in a christian a times, and that it can help purify the church from false doctrines- being under persecution can make you decide fairly quickly if you really believe, or if you just act. Again, I didn't mean to insult you, your ministry, or the things that are going on. I'm convinced that I don't understand much of it, and wouldn't pretend like I know about it all.Grace and Peace...