From Religion Today:
Washington, D.C. (ICC) — A recent spate of attacks against Christians and house churches in China underlines the country’s relentless habit of persecuting Christians, even at the cost of its own reputation in the international community.
Christians Beaten in Hainan Province
On Aug. 14, a number of Christians in Lingao town, Lincheng county, Hainan Province, were violently beaten by urban management officers when they tried to prevent construction at a building site.
The Christians were looking forward to a church that was originally intended to be constructed at the site, but when local government secretly sold the site to developers, they were left floundering in the dark. As they protested the construction, the violence began and several children and elderly people were injured, with two women going into a coma as a result of the retaliation. When the Christians informed the police, they refused to address the attack.
House Church Pastor Abducted and Assaulted
Also on Aug. 13, Li Shuangping, leader of Linfen house church, was abducted and beaten by agents of the local government. Li was reportedly driving home when he was forced to stop because a young man, who appeared to be intoxicated, staggered into the path of his car. As soon as he stopped, a black sedan drove up next to him and three men got out of the car. Along with the “intoxicated” young man, the four of them dragged Li out of his car, forced him into the black sedan, blindfolded him and restrained him with a rope.
When one of the men drove the car, the other three held him down in the backseat and assaulted him, punching and kicking him in the head, neck and torso. As he was being beaten, they were launching all manner of threats against him and his family, asking whether he would like to die as a result of leading a house church. When the car finally stopped, he was thrown into a cornfield and left alone to find his way home. Li believes that the events of Aug. 13 were secretly ordered by the local government, to threaten him and other house church leaders and to suppress the house church movement.