125 House Churches Closed in China

( [email protected] ) Nov 21, 2003 07:56 AM EST

BEIJING – A Hong Kong based human rights organization reported on Nov. 20 that authorities in the Jiangsu province shut down 125 house-churches since July. The closures severed nearly 3,000 Christians from their places of worship, prayer, study and conference.

The Information Center for Human Rights and Democracy has often publicized news about the oft-persecuted underground churches across China. According to the ICHRD, the officials in the public security bureaus of Sugian city, Danyang city and Xushui County refused to comment when questioned.

China only recognizes churches registered to the state, under the “Three-Self Patriotic” system. The leaders of the burgeoning house churches who refuse to join the TSP are often taken into custody for being a “threat” to the communist rule.