Top stories in Hong Kong reports about the activities of a sect named Zion Church.
According to the reports, the sect’s preachers are urging students and parents in new towns Tin Shui Wai and Yuen Long to drink fluids laced with bleaching agent hydrogen peroxide to protect themselves from SARS and cancer.
Hydrogen peroxide is a colorless liquid that is used as a bleaching agent and may damage the throat if swallowed. Strong doses of it may be lethal.
Some citizens in these new towns said that the group also reaches to students from Mainland China by providing them free tutorial class. As it gains the credit from their parents, it will reveal its identity as a Zion Church member and introduce to them the advantage of drinking the fluids containing hydrogen peroxide.
Teachers from some schools are said to be members and freely distribute pamphlets in classrooms. Offering one- fifth of the monthly income is required for every member of Zion Church. The group is now fast developing. It is estimated a membership of around 2,000 in the new towns.
Yesterday, Yuen Long Christian Association has held a conference discussing the issue. The association adamantly disagreed with the teaching of Zion Church about drinking fluids containing hydrogen peroxide and its view of Eschatology. Seminars will soon be conducted by the association to help citizens in the district to build a correct understanding of Christianity.
Rev. Wu Chi Wai, chairman of Hong Kong Church Renewal Movement, states that Hong Kong Church Renewal Movement and pastoral group of the district will join hands to hold Press Conference in a few days. It aims to remind the public about the background and impact of the Zion Church event.
The Education and Manpower Bureau was informed a few weeks ago by secondary school heads about the Zion Church's activities and primary school students are now being recruited. The police spokesman said they would keep eye on Zion Church, and take further actions once any breach of public security is found in its activities.
In 1996, Zion Church had once been very active in advocating the use of hydrogen peroxide. One of the Zion church members died after drinking hydrogen peroxide. The court finally judged the case as “Natural death”.