House Church in Chengdu Raided on Sunday, Five Christians Taken to Police Station
A house church in China’s Chengdu was raided during its Sunday service yesterday, before the police took the couple in charge of the church and other three Christians away for interrogation.
When the Spring of Life Church (East Hall) was having its worship yesterday, the local authorities interrupted their service and took away elder Cha Changping, who is in charge of the church, his wife, and other Christians. They were only released in the afternoon after being questioned and told that they have “gathered illegally.”
On January 10, 2019, the church also experienced a similar raid, where they were told “not to organize illegal religious activities” by local authorities. Some books were confiscated in the process.
Elder Cha Changping was one of the Christian leaders who signed “A Joint Statement by Pastors: A Declaration for the Sake of the Christian Faith” in 2018, an initiative started by the now imprisoned pastor Wang Yi from Early Rain Covenant Church criticizing the lack of religious freedom in China. In the past years, the authorities often target the churches of these signatories and threaten to shut them down if they do not join the state-sanctioned Three-self churches.