A Christian minister from Early Rain Covenant Church, a heavily-persecuted house church in southwestern China’s Sichuan province, and his wife have been confined to their home since April 1 as the passageway to the home has reportedly been chained by police, according to reports.
Persecution watchdog China Aid reported that the door to the home of the ERCC minister, Wu Wuqing, and his wife, Xiong Meifang, was locked up with a chain from the outside on June 4.
The Christian couple, who live in Damian Town’s Longquanyi District in Chengdu City, was detained on April 1, according to the United States-based watchdog International Christian Concern.
Chinese Communist Party authorities have monitored the only passageway to Wu’s condo with unknown individuals chaining the corridor connecting the elevator and the fire door in the hallway.
The nonprofit added that those monitoring the couple also routinely refused to allow visitors. None of the monitors disclosed their identities or showed the couple their identification cards.
Wu repeatedly phoned the police, but officers have not done anything to resolve the situation.
Xiong reportedly told church members: “Our Heavenly Father locked the door, and He will unlock it when the time comes. We will pray for the police and CCP authorities every day. May the Lord gain their souls.”
Last month, Pastor Yang Hua of another heavily-persecuted house church, Guiyang Living Stone Church in southwest Guizhou Province, was hospitalized after being detained and brutally beaten by CCP authorities.
China Aid reported that on May 23, as Yang planned to visit Christians in Qingdao, police seized and transported him to their station. At the station, a Guiyang Yunyan District Party Committee leader punched the pastor, injuring him so severely that an official called emergency medical personnel. The pastor was then transported to a nearby hospital.
Numerous reports have documented how religious persecution in China intensified in 2020, with thousands of Christians affected by church closures and other human rights abuses.
Authorities in China are also continuing their crackdown on Christianity by removing Bible Apps and Christian WeChat public accounts as new highly restrictive administrative measures on religious staff went into effect earlier in May.
Open Doors USA’s World Watch List ranks China as the 17th-worst country in the world when it comes to the persecution of Christians. The organization notes that all churches are perceived as a threat if they become too large, too political or invite foreign guests.
Christians are not the only religious minority to face persecution at the hands of the CCP.
Estimates suggest that as many as 1 million Uighur and other ethnic Muslims have been subject to internment camps in the western Xinjiang province, where they are taught to be secular citizens who fall in line with the ruling Communist Party.