Thursday, January 11, 2018

China Demolishes Evangelical Mega-church in city of Linfen of Shanxi province


Hundreds of police and hired thugs smashed the church and seized Bibles in an earlier crackdown in 2009 that ended with church leaders receiving long prison sentences.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | Int'l Desk
Source/Credit: Haaretz News / Excerpt
By The Associated Press | January 11, 2018

The church, with a congregation of more than 50,000, has long clashed with the government

Demolition underscores the long-standing tensions between religious groups and the officially atheistic Communist Party

 Authorities in northern China’s coal country this week demolished a well-known Evangelical Christian mega-church, underscoring long-standing tensions between religious groups and the officially atheistic Communist Party.

Witnesses and overseas activists say paramilitary People’s Armed Police forces used excavators and dynamite on Tuesday to destroy the Golden Lampstand Church in the city of Linfen in Shanxi province.

ChinaAid, a U.S.-based Christian advocacy group, said local authorities planted explosives in an underground worship hall to demolish the building, which was built with nearly $3 million in contributions from local worshippers in one of China’s poorest regions.

The church, with a congregation of more than 50,000, has long clashed with the government. Hundreds of police and hired thugs smashed the church and seized Bibles in an earlier crackdown in 2009 that ended with church leaders receiving long prison sentences.

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