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Report Updates

The following three reports provide up-to-date information received from
ChinaAid regarding the recent court cases of Christian leaders in China.

Lian Changnian and Lian Xuliang
Pastors Lian Changnian and Lian Xuliang

Xi'an Church of Abundance
In August 2022, three ministers from the Church of Abundance located in Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, were detained on allegations of fraud. (See more details on their detentions.) The three church leaders were identified as Lian Changnian, Lian Xuliang and Fu Juan. Though these believers were placed in "residential surveillance at a designated location," their families received no information on their whereabouts for a duration of six months. During that time, the detained Christians endured starvation, deprivation and other forms of torture.

While the three believers have been held in custody since August 2022, they were not formally detained until February 15th, 2023, and then officially arrested one month later. Finally, in late January 2024, the Christian workers were brought before the court. At the time of publishing this report, their trials have not yet concluded. In the meantime, the accused church leaders are facing recommended sentences of five years in prison, along with fines exceeding $70,000 CAD.

Chen Wensheng is smiling and holding a backpack and a piece of literature.
Evangelist Chen Wensheng

Prisoned Evangelist: Chen Wensheng
Known as a "Gospel Warrior," Chen Wensheng has been arrested multiple times for his evangelistic work. Even during his imprisonment, he found opportunities to share the Gospel with fellow prisoners. His most recent encounter with the authorities was on August 29th, 2023, when he was apprehended while attempting to board a plane to South Korea. (For more information on his arrest, visit this report.)

Chen's wife recently visited him while he was in custody. She reported that he appeared to be "radiant and joyful." Additionally, she described how Chen had been spreading the Gospel throughout the detention centre and wanted to be transferred to another facility so he could continue reaching others! Accused of "organizing and funding illegal gatherings," Chen's case was heard by the court on March 27th. However, no further details about the trial have been made available to date.

Chang Hao’s wife Enlin is standing outside with his lawyer.
Chang Hao’s wife, Enlin,
accompanied by his lawyer.

Detained Church Leader: Chang Hao
On March 28th, a report was released calling for prayer on behalf of Chang Hao, a detained church leader who had experienced mistreatment and extensive court delays after being charged by Chinese authorities (read more). It has since been revealed that the believer's case was scheduled to be heard in court on March 25th. However, when Chang's lawyer appeared in court, he was informed that the case involved state secrets and therefore would not be heard in public. The court officials then attempted to conduct the trial via video conference. After strong protests from the lawyer, the judge postponed the trial. The new hearing date is yet to be determined.

Accused of "picking quarrels and provoking trouble," Chang was detained on April 14th, 2023, and held in custody for more than four months. Throughout that time, no information had been provided to his concerned family. Chang was finally charged on November 28th of that same year. (To learn more about the challenges encountered by this Christian leader, a previously published report is available here.)

Despite concerns for Chang's health, the imprisoned believer's family members continue to place their trust in the Lord. His 87-year-old mother, who considers her son's arrest to be one of "grace and honour," continually thanks God for His sovereignty over the situation. After finding out about the latest trial delay, Chang's wife, Enlin, was also able to confidently declare that "everything is in God's hands."

Prayerfully remember each one of these detained Chinese believers who are enduring imprisonment and mistreatment because of their faithful witness for Christ. Pray that these devoted followers of Jesus – along with the many other believers who are suffering in various areas of China – will be filled with the strength, hope and grace they need to continue serving as steadfast witnesses of God's unconditional love. Also remember their concerned families who often receive no news for extended periods of time. During this difficult season of familial separation, may they also receive God's sustaining grace, comfort and peace.

  • Current Ministry Projects

    The Voice of the Martyrs Canada continues to help distribute Bibles to Christians in the country, making it possible for them to have their own printed version of God's Word. Additionally, VOMC works with various mission partners to facilitate a Biblical understanding of persecution and discipleship, while presenting ways to effectively respond and minister within the context of hostility.

    Project Funds: Underground Church, Bible, Relief & Development

  • Country Information

    Population
    1,413,142,846 (2023 est.)

    Ethnicity (%)
    Han Chinese (91.1), ethnic minorities (8.9 - includes Zhang, Hui, Manchu, Uighur, Miao, Yi, Tujia, Tibetan, Mongol, Dong, Buyei, Yao, Bai, Korean, Hani, Li, Kazakh, Dai, and other nationalities) (2021 est.)

    Religion (%)
    Folk religion (21.9), Buddhist (18.2), Christian (5.1), Muslim (1.8), Hindu (< 0.1), Jewish (< 0.1), other (0.7 - includes Daoist [Taoist]), unaffiliated (52.1) (2021 est.)

    Leader
    President Xi Jinping (2013)

    Government type
    Communist party-led state

    Legal system
    Based on civil law system; influenced by Soviet and continental European civil law systems

    Sources: CIA World Factbook

  • Pray for China

    Pray that the Gospel will be proclaimed throughout China without government interference so many more names can be added to the Lamb's "Book of Life." May there also be a spirit of unity demonstrated among the country's growing churches, further strengthening existing believers and spurring them on in their ministry service and evangelistic outreach within the country's numerous communities.

China News