CBN News | Aug. 15, 2018
Two Catholic priests belonging to an underground church in China’s Gansu province have been dismissed after local authorities accused them of holding an illegal Christian summer camp for youngsters.
According to a Catholic news agency, some 80 children, ages 10 to 14, were meeting for a week-long youth retreat when police raided the campsite in the northern city of Tianjin and shut it down.
The organizers of the camp, Father Wang Yiqin, and Father Li Shidong, were immediately removed and sent back to their hometowns.
Tianjin officials later sent a letter to China’s state-controlled Catholic Church agency requesting that two new priests be sent as their replacements.
“There are people in the government who want to break the current situation,” a source told the Catholic news agency UCAN. “They do not allow the underground church to exist and must convert it to be open.”
Christians in China are facing an unprecedented wave of persecution as the government wages a campaign against people of faith.
In recent months, hundreds of ‘house churches’ have been closed, crosses atop church buildings have been destroyed, the Bible banned, children were prevented from attending church services and images of Christ ripped down and replaced with posters of China’s Communist president.
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