A Henan province evangelical church was demolished by the Chinese government when the members said they don’t want the church to be repurposed as a nursing home.
The state first raided True Jesus Church last June, and 200 congregants were worshiping that time. As people pray to Christ, 60 officials rushed to the facility to cut its power.
The Religious Affairs Bureau Director who headed the raid stated the church engaged in illegal fundraising, so the church was considered an illegal building. He gave a prompt order to the church leaders to close the building so they can transform it into a nursing facility, but the church administrators refused.
Bitter Winter, a persecution watchdog, said, “After the raid, the police frequently surveilled and recorded services at the church from its entrance. What believers didn’t know was that the government was planning a covert crackdown.”
At around 3 a.m. on July 26, nearly 1,000 personnel from several county departments gathered at a nearby school, getting ready for an operation to forcibly demolish the church. According to sources who were present at the gathering, police officers were ordered to drag out all believers from the church, no matter how many would be present. To prevent information from leaking, nobody inside the church was allowed to take photos or makes phone calls.
As soon as all orders were given, the group of 1,000 people went to the church. All intersections leading to the church were cordoned off, officers stormed inside, and started dragging out congregants who were guarding the church. Two elderly believers were injured in the process; one was taken to the hospital because her blood pressure spiked from the stress.”
A video camera captured the demolition, and it shows how heavy machinery flattened the church. It did not just break the heart of Chinese Christians, because it’s a heartbreak for anyone who wants to become closer to God no matter what their race or religion is.
The worth of the demolished facility is approximated at $1.4 million. Even if the congregation left a lot of valuable belongings inside the church, the authorities still demolished the infrastructure. Then, they removed the rubble before laying new ground. They have removed the traces of the evangelical church like it didn’t exist.
Bitter Winter said it’s not only that because thirteen churchgoers and eight church leaders were charged with unlawful detention.
Christians around the world are praying for Christians in China, which their only crime is trying to become pleasing to God.