Displaying items by tag: China
Two protesters are in a critical condition after being shot in violent demonstrations and a pro-Beijing supporter was doused in flammable liquid and set alight after arguing with protesters, who are demanding greater democracy and police accountability. The pedestrian crossing where the first young protester was shot has become a site of considerable tension. He remains in a critical condition. The protester we prayed for last week after falling from a car park has since died. The police also drew firearms from their holsters in two other places but denied reports that they were ordered to ‘recklessly use their firearms’. An independent expert said that Hong Kong’s police watchdog does not have the powers or resources to cope with the scale of protests, and ‘light touch’ body probing by the police at demonstrations has a capabilities ‘shortfall’. Powers to summon witnesses need to meet the task of examining allegations against police. See also
Chinese Christians in Anhui are said to be ‘outraged’ after their state-registered megachurch was demolished and their pastors arrested.
Demolition work (pictured) began at Funan County Christian Church on Friday, partway through a worship service. (More information and short video clip of the demolition here.)
Elderly church members knelt down in front of the church, begging officials not to destroy the building, says Release partner ChinaAid. Several fainted and required hospital treatment.
Pastors Geng Yimin and Sun Yongyao were arrested the next day on suspicion of ‘gathering a crowd to disturb social order’. Their church could seat up to 3,000 people.
ChinaAid Director Bob Fu says believers are ‘outraged’.
‘The Chinese Government is now ordering believers to worship in a remote endangered building which can only host a few hundred people,’ he said. Yet, ChinaAid says many Christians, including those in Funan, are too afraid to speak out for fear of more persecution.
Pray: that God will bless His people in Funan and provide a new building for them. Pray that they will grow in unity and faith through this ordeal.
Pray: for the immediate release without charge of Funan pastors Geng Yimin and Sun Yongyao. Ask God to comfort those who were distressed by the demolition.
Praise: God that Christianity is growing fast in China, despite intense persecution. Sources quoted by ChinaAid estimate that there are now more than 100 million Christians in China.
(Source: China Aid)
Since Hong Kong’s anti-government protests began, Beijing’s state TV (CCTV) has gone to great lengths to demonise protesters and mislead Chinese and international audiences about the nature of the movement. CCTV’s flagship news programme runs segments denouncing the protests, claiming they are linked to ‘external forces’. It also reported that a protester had blinded a woman, whereas she was actually struck in the eye by a police bean-bag round. The station’s international arm released videos and graphics on YouTube and Facebook, comparing protesters to Islamist militants and claiming they are backed by US spy agencies. Recently a news video platform urged its 89 million followers to identify, investigate, and publish online the personal information of Hong Kong protesters and journalists - thus targeting the political enemies of the Communist party, which celebrated its 70th anniversary on 1 October. It has taken China less than 70 years to emerge from isolation to become one of the world's greatest economic powers.
China is killing religious and ethnic minorities and harvesting their organs, UN Human Rights Council told.
Lawyers for independent China Tribunal say UN member states have ‘legal obligation’ to act.
The Chinese government is harvesting and selling organs from persecuted religious and ethnic minorities on an industrial scale, the UN Human Rights Council has been told.
Speaking at the council’s headquarters in Geneva on Tuesday, lawyer Hamid Sabi presented the findings of the China Tribunal, an independent tribunal on allegations of forced organ harvesting.
Mr Sabi told the council that UN member states have a “legal obligation” to act after the tribunal’s final report in June found that “the commission of crimes against humanity against the Falun Gong and Uighur [minorities] had been proved beyond reasonable doubt”.
The China Tribunal was chaired by Sir Geoffrey Nice QC. It concluded that there was clear evidence China had been extracting organs from, and thereby killing, members of the Falun Gong spiritual group for at least 20 years, and that the practice was ongoing today.
Detainees were “killed to order - cut open while still alive for their kidneys, livers, hearts, lungs, cornea and skin to be removed and turned into commodities for sale”, the tribunal’s final judgement said.
The tribunal said there was also possible evidence, though in less volume, of forced organ harvesting in detainees from the Uighur Muslim minority, as well as Tibetans and some Christian sects.
China’s campaign of detention and “re-education” of more than a million Uighurs in the northwestern Xinjiang province has gained significant international attention and condemnation. The tribunal found evidence they were “being used as a bank of organs” and subjected to regular medical testing.
China has repeatedly denied the use of unethical organ transplant practices, and said that it stopped using the organs from executed prisoners in 2015. In a statement earlier this year, it accused the London-based China Tribunal of perpetuating “rumours”.
But Sir Geoffrey said the evidence collated by the tribunal meant the international community “can no longer avoid what it is inconvenient for them to admit”.
The organ transplant industry is estimated to earn China more than $1bn (£801.4m) a year, according to the tribunal. Sir Geoffrey called on the International Transplant Society and national medical associations dealing with transplant surgery to “face up to what is revealed in the China Tribunal judgment and act”.
The International Coalition to End Transplant Abuse in China (Etac), which initiated the China Tribunal, said it expects a private members bill to stop unethical organ tourism will be tabled in the UK parliament in October. Etac is hoping its findings will prompt the Human Rights Council to open up a UN Commission of Inquiry into forced organ harvesting in China, said Susie Hughes, the organisation’s executive director.
Adam Withnall Asia Editor - Independent
Pray: that the international community will take a stand against this shocking and inhumane treatment of minority groups.
Pray: for the ‘re-education projects’ to be closed and for the human rights of all people across China to be restored and respected.
Pray: Lets pray continually, for the church in China, that despite persecution, it will grow stronger. (Matt 5:10)
A believer says the Chinese government doesn’t want Christians to know the Ten Commandments, which have been removed from nearly every state church and meeting venue and replaced with quotations from a 2015 speech by Xi Jinping. The government said that the core socialist values and Chinese culture will swallow religions of China and support religious communities to re-interpret religious thought, doctrines, and teachings in a way that conforms to the progress of the times. This means resolutely guarding against the infiltration of Western ideology, and consciously resisting the influence of extremist thought. Some churches have been closed for not replacing the Ten Commandments with the President’s quotes. Others have been threatened with blacklisting, which means that travel, schooling, and their children’s future employment will be impeded if they refuse to overhaul their church's teaching. A pastor said, ‘The Communist Party’s ultimate goal is to become God’.
In 1989, the longest human chain in history (675 kilometres) was formed from north Estonia across Latvia to south Lithuania, as a moral protest against the illegal occupation of those lands by the Soviet Union. Thirty years later, thousands of protesters formed an unauthorised but peaceful human chain across Hong Kong in a movement against the erosion of liberties under Chinese rule. On 29 August, at 3 am, Hong Kong became alarmed as Chinese troops, armoured personnel carriers and trucks poured into the city in what Beijing called 'routine' troop rotation. China has made it clear recently that it considers a military intervention in the crisis a viable option, despite US warnings that this might lead to a repeat of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre. On 30 August, three prominent protesters were arrested. See
“Our Father in Heaven, your Kingdom Come…” -Matt 6:10
This second petition of the Lord’s prayer began to explode in me in our recent gathering in Hong Kong, July 22-27th. Several thousand Chinese came to pray in unity together as family from Taiwan, Macau, Hong Kong, and mainland China.
We joined with these precious saints to seek First God’s kingdom in the midst of a swirl of political chaos, turmoil, and increasing violence. Many protests have been launched against the Chinese government asking for democracy, religious freedom, and autonomy in the city. Several times during our gatherings, we cried out, “Father Your Kingdom Come, Your Will be done, on earth as it is in heaven,” with a great sense of urgency. To pray this second petition of the Lord’s prayer is one of the most radical things we can pray as human beings. It turns out that in this petition we are asking God to bring about the most massive revolution imaginable.
In using the term Kingdom of God or Kingdom of Heaven the Hebrew writers were not just thinking of a place over which God would rule, but rather it was a way of expressing, “God is acting as King.” The Hebrew prophets longed for the day when God would impose his kingly rule over all of creation, ushered in by God’s Messiah, ‘the anointed one.’ On the final day, the ‘Day of the Lord,’ God would judge human wickedness, and wipe away all evil, forever reversing the effects of the fall of man! He would vindicate those who trusted in him and fill them with his Holy Spirit, bringing about the restoration of all things according to God’s original design!
Jesus asks to pray this way “Your Kingdom Come.” We are given the amazing privilege of inviting God’s glorious future, heaven invading and occupying earth! Not only is God’s kingdom coming, but Jesus declared in Mark 1:15, “the time is fulfilled, the kingdom of God is at hand.” The term at hand literally means, ‘come near.’ Jesus means that the reign of God, God acting as King has come near!
Does Jesus mean it is about to arrive and therefore we should get ready? Or does Jesus mean it has arrived and we should grab hold of it and enter in?! I believe he means both! It is here right now -already- and it is yet to come! Jesus is announcing that in him and because of him the future reign of God has now broken into the present!
When Jesus healed the sick, cast out devils, raised the dead, calmed the winds and the waves, multiplied bread and fish to feed the hungry, championed the poor and the needy, filled ordinary people in and with the Holy Spirit- that is the Kingdom – the blessing of the future breaking into the present! And yet Jesus also says several times that the Kingdom was still to come, sharing with his disciples several parables to be waiting and watching – ready for his return! Therefore, in Jesus, this glorious, redeeming, restoring ‘reign of God’ is already -not yet!
In another sense it might be compared to ‘veiled’ versus ‘visible.’ The already – not yet is a matter of ‘hidden’ versus ‘manifest.’ The really good news is that in Jesus, the Kingdom is already among us but often in a veiled and hidden form. When the King is present, so is the Kingdom! Indeed, the Kingdom is present only where Jesus Christ is King! Certainly, the King is here- right where you and I are – in our everyday lives, in our homes, at our workplaces, in our hospitals- and yet just behind that thin veil of hiddenness. At any point God could pull back the curtain and we would all fall on our faces and worship!
One of the interesting keys to understanding this prayer is to see how Jesus uses the verbs, ‘hallow, come, be done, give, forgive, deliver.’ Surprisingly the verbs are in the imperative. They are commands not requests. To pray the Lord’s prayer is to command not to request, “Be done - your will, Hallowed – be your name, Come - Your Kingdom” This may seem a bit audacious, but this is how Jesus taught us to pray. These verbs are also in the passive voice, which means only God can hallow his name, bring his kingdom, do his will!
The prayer is not what many believers have thought it to be, ‘let us hallow your name.’ ‘let us bring your kingdom,’ ‘let us do your will.,’ important as those things may be. Rather the prayer is, ‘Father you do it! You hallow your name on earth as it is in heaven. You bring your kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. You do your will on earth as it is in heaven!
Professor Stendahl of Harvard university reminds us that the prayer, “asks for the establishment of the kingdom of God, by God for us, not by us for God.” We are asking God to do what only he can do!
So then how ought we to pray, “Your Kingdom Come?” Of course, with each of these simple phrases you can include the who, when, where, of places, circumstance, situations and peoples as the Spirit leads! It might sound something like this:
“Father before the coming Day of the Lord, Revealwhat is invisible, Manifest what is hidden!”
“Father Unveil your Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven.”
“Father let your Kingdom come in me, so it can come through me!”
“Father act as King! Extend your sceptre, reign and rule on earth as you do in heaven! May your Kingdom be established, be expanded, and be embraced!”
“King of Kings manifest your splendor, power and glory on the earth! Break through any darkness King Jesus! Make wrong things right! Heal the sick, bind principalities and powers, raise the dead, free the captives, reconcile enemies, reverse the effects of sin, restore broken humanity, Come and Reign without Rival on the earth!”
And at the end of each of these prayers as you add specific places, situations, peoples as the target of your prayers, you can also add, “So that’ your name might be hallowed! ‘So that’ your name might be honoredand treasured! ‘So that,’ your name might be treated as infinitely valuable here on earth (in your home, school, church, city, nation, etc.) as it is in heaven!
Come Thy Kingdom!
Dr. Jason Hubbard – IPC Executive Coordinator
IPC colleague, Tom Victor reports back on the Chinese Homecoming and Watchmen gatherings held in July.
God’s Amazing Family!
Hong Kong has been in the news a lot lately. But with all the mass gatherings and ongoing protests, perhaps you missed the most exciting news!
From July 24-27 thousands of Chinese Christians from around the world met in Hong Kong to worship, to pray and to celebrate their “Oneness” in Christ.
They came from the mainland, from Hong Kong, from Taiwan and from nations around the world. These believers recognize that they are One Family with One Father.
This is their true identity. They are committed to be one in Christ - just as Jesus prayed facing the cross.
Their oneness found expression across the generations as the worship turned towards children. On the last evening, a group of children in “full animal costumes” led us in our time of worship and celebration. The joy was contagious and gave new meaning to the words of Jesus: “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” Luke 18:16
Others from around the world also came to Hong Kong to worship, pray, celebrate and cheer on our precious Chinese family. Several leaders from Japan and Korea were present. They are all committed to walk together as One Family in Christ, an identify that transcends the history of brutal conflict and conquest between these nations!
What an amazing family! What an amazing God!
A group called Watchmen for the Nations put on the Chinese Homecoming. They are led by a former Egyptian medical doctor, David Demian. The Watchmen group hosts similar gatherings all around the world. David’s team includes young leaders who were front and center in the planning and execution of the Chinese Homecoming. They were the ones who felt God calling them to include the children in worship. It’s no wonderthat more than 50% of the attendees in Hong Kong were under the age of 40. Their passion for Oneness extends in tangible ways - across generational lines.
(Photo - left to right: Tom Victor / Werner Nachtigal / Dr Jason Hubbard)
A team of more than 180 leaders gathered for two days before the larger event to pray and seek God together for His direction. Some of us with the International Prayer Council were invited to join them – topray and to listen to God together. Before those two days ended, we felt God wascalling us to “enlarge ourfamily” by committing to walk together.
The Watchmen for the Nations team allowed us to share the Go 2020 Kids vision and key resources with their leadership team. We are now working to get the Go 2020 Kids “tool kit” into Chinese. So good!
Tom Victor – Great Commission Coalition / IPC Leadership Team
September 24, 2019, is the annual Save North Korean Refugees Day, organized by the North Korea Freedom Coalition, marking the anniversary of Communist China signing the international refugee convention – the very agreement it ignores and cruelly violates by its treatment of North Korean refugees.
Do not forget that China’s president Xi Jinping continues to kill innocent men, women, and children fleeing North Korea, as we see reports of his ongoing brutality against Christians, Falun Gong practitioners, Tibetans, Uighers, and now the citizens of Hong Kong.
Everyone, regardless of where you live, can participate with us on Save North Korean Refugees Day, this September 24. We are recruiting city and country coordinators who agree to deliver an appeal, on that day, to the local Chinese Embassy or consulate in your city.
Here’s what you can do:
If you live in a City with a Chinese Embassy or Consulate: Consider being a country or city coordinator. We ask you commit to deliver a letter of appeal to Communist Chinese President Xi Jinping demanding the PRC end its repatriation policy. A template letter will be provided for your use, or coordinators can prepare their own letter of appeal from their respective NGOs. We only ask that you share a picture of your delivered letter.
You are also welcome to take whatever additional action you would like on that day. For example, coordinators have hosted conferences and film screenings to raise awareness of the North Korea human rights issue, while others have planned demonstrations and rallies and prayer vigils.
Here is a link to last year's activities and events for reference to give you some ideas of what folks from Los Angeles to Pretoria, from Tokyo to Linglongwe did last year to stand up for our North Korean brothers and sisters facing death by China's actions: http://www.nkfreedom.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/B-SNKRD-2018-FINAL.pdf
Suzanne Scholte - Seoul Peace Prize Laureate
President, Defense Forum Foundation
Pray: Lets be in prayer for a step change in China's treatment of these innocent and vulnerable people escaping North Korea.
Pray: For a change in policy by President Xi Jinping, that stops the killings and forced re-patriations.
Pray: For an end to the imprisonment and brutality against Christians and other faith groups in China.
Pray: For the Church in China and North Korea to grow and become stronger despite the persecution and oppression.
Please pray for resolution between Hong Kong's pro-democracy people and China’s government. After police firing as many rounds of tear gas in one day as during the entire months of June and July, a general strike, and days of disruptions at Hong Kong Airport, protesters are now being called terrorists and China’s ambassador to the UK has warned that troops will intervene to restore order if necessary. Videos show a massive number of Chinese military vehicles gathering along the border. Hong Kong has its own legal system, borders, and rights including freedom of assembly and free speech, which are all meant to be protected. But things are changing. Rights groups accuse China of meddling in Hong Kong with legal rulings that disqualify pro-democracy legislators; also, five Hong Kong booksellers and a tycoon disappeared, all eventually re-emerging in custody in China. Artists and writers are under increased pressure to self-censor.