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Screws tightened on House Church

BEIJING (AsiaNews): An intimidation campaign has been launched against a House Church in Guizhou province, with local authorities threatening to sue its members and bar their children from tertiary education.

The United States of America-based ChinaAid said in a press release on July 16 that people attending the Huaqiu Church were told that if they didn’t stop bringing their children to Church, they would not be admitted to any university or military academy.

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Government push for Church money

WENZHOU (SE): Relations between Churches and the local government in the province of Zhejiang, China, have been stretched over the past two years with a spate of demolition of crosses from Church buildings, but China Aid Media reported that the latest clash has been over money.

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Pakistan mourns national treasure

KARACHI (SE): The victim of an assassination in Karachi, Pakistan, on June 22, renowned qawwal, Amjad Farid Sabri, was described as the loss of a national treasure in a statement from the National Commission for Justice and Peace.

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Detained for religious contraband

HONG KONG (UCAN): Two Christian people remain in detention after being found to be in possession of religious material in the southern Guangdong province of China.

China Aid reported on June 15 that the police initially took three members of the Zhongfu Tongxin Church in Shantou into custody on May 30, but later released one.

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Crosses down flags up on churches

HONG KONG (UCAN): The hammer and sickle, the well-known symbol of the Communist state of China is now being flown atop churches in some parts of the country where once a cross reached for the sky.

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Prayer rally after desecration banned

HANDAN (AsiaNews): Police and the Religious Affairs Bureau in Handan, Hebei province, prevented the local Catholic communities from gathering for a day of prayer and fasting after the tabernacle of the church was desecrated on June 3.

The church had been burgled and the tabernacle broken into. Hosts were found scattered on the ground outside the building.

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Religious persecution up in China

HONG KONG (UCAN): The Annual Report of Religious and Human Rights Persecution claims that as many as 20,000 people suffered from what can be classified as religious persecution in China during 2015.

Nevertheless, The Christian Post reported on May 24 that despite increasing persecution, the number of Christians in the country continues to grow.

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Pastor opposed to cross demolitions released

Beijing (Agencies): Zhang Chongzhu, who protested against the government’s cross demolition campaign, was released on May 9. 

Zhang, the pastor of the Pyongyang Three-Self Patriotic Movement Church in Zhejiang province, had been detained since August 2015. 

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Church demolition team buries protester alive

ZHUMADIAN (AsiaNews): Ding Cuimei, the wife of an Protestant pastor, Reverend Li Jiangong, from an unregistered Church in Zhumadian, Henan, died of suffocation after she was buried alive while trying to defend their Beitou Church building from demolition.

Her husband, who was also buried, managed to survive.

The police have opened an investigation and arrested two people from the demolition team, but did not reveal any details about the case.

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Age not the only dilemma for China’s bishops

HONG KONG (UCAN): Who can take their place is becoming a circular dilemma for some of China’s ageing bishops.

While the general custom in the Church is for bishops to retire at 75, Bishop Vincent Zhu Weifang, from Wenzhou, has found that stepping down is fraught with problems, even though he is already 90.

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