From the Foleys
Could church closures be a blessing for Chinese Christians?
Christians from a church in Shanghai asking not to be identified held their Sunday worship service on the street last week after authorities closed their church building. A video clip shows the church members singing in front of their building.
The closure of the church building is part of an accelerating trend across China since the implementation of new religious laws in January 2018. But even though that trend is concerning, Christians in China are responding with their own trend: Returning to old-time house church ways of meeting that are keeping the faith alive.
When you listen to the Christians in Shanghai singing outside of their closed church building, you can hear that they are not afraid of the authorities. Instead, they and the other Christians of China see the present moment as God redirecting the Chinese church away from modern "megachurch" models and back to the past where Christians met anywhere they could, anytime they could, using whatever Bibles and discipleship resources they had, to keep their faith and even to spread it.
Some of the Chinese churches that Voice of the Martyrs Korea works with are shifting their worship away from the central church building into members’ homes, while others are meeting in public parks or even while walking. The goal is to decentralize church activities and to shift as much of the ministry as possible from pastors and trained professionals to congregation members.
Now the greatest need is to
To read the rest of Pastor Foley's update on our blog,