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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

1-18-10 "Our Brothers in Asia"

As Christians, we must expect to face some level of persecution. Jesus himself said that we would. I’m sure you’ve encountered a bit of this or at least have seen it happen- maybe someone you know ridicules you for following Christ. Maybe your friend or brother got a bad grade on his English class in college because the professor was angry at the way he spoke openly about his faith. However, there are very few cases in the US where persecution has risen to level that we can see in other countries. Persecution is particularly bad in northern Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.

This represents millions of Christinas at risk

Here is the story of one event:

Before dawn on Sunday, September 13, 2009, a band of 400 government officials, police and hired ruffians launched an attack on Linfen-Fushan Church in Shanxi. With no warning, members who were sleeping at the church construction site were mercilessly beaten, with more than 30 left in critical condition. Bulldozers razed the factory and church building to the ground, and the mob looted any valuables and smashed the remaining property. Following the brutal attack, the Fushan governing officials arrested more than ten Linfen church leaders.

They need prayer

Esther, the daughter of two Linfen pastors, called home frantically in October, after learning about the attack on Fushan Church over the internet. The phone rang and rang, but no one answered. She later learned from a relative that her father and mother had been arrested in a sweeping backlash against house church leaders on October 11, 2009.

In the trial held on November 25th, Esther's father Yang Xuan was convicted of "unlawfully occupying agricultural land" and sentenced to 3 1/2 years with a 20,000 Yuan fine. Her Aunt Yang Rongli received a maximum sentence of 7 years in prison and 30,000 Yuan fine, and her Uncle Wang Xiaoguang received 3 years in prison with a 10,000 Yuan fine. Esther's mother, Yang Caizhen, was arbitrarily sentenced to two years Re-education through Labor in the brutal Laogai (labor-camp) system. Already fearing for their safety and health, Esther learned in December that her mother had been severely beaten in prison.

 Thank the Lord for religious freedom in North America and Europe! Let us fight to keep that liberty and defend it above all other rights.

But let’s not forget the persecuted. This is a huge problem! How can YOU help? You can donate, and it will be a great help. But the most important thing for you to do is PRAY! Here are a couple of sites to keep you informed as to what the greatest prayer needs are:

Persecution blog from Voice of the Martyrs

China Aid- the site from which the above story is taken


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