Seth Udinski, FISM News
As the church continues to face persecution in China, one Chinese woman was recently sentenced to prison for the simple act of sharing the gospel.
51-year-old female evangelist Hao Zhiwei of Egangqiao Church in Ezhou city was condemned by a court last month for what the Chinese courts deemed “fraud.” The crime she is said to have committed was actually sharing the gospel in a way that was not reportedly “approved” by the Chinese Communist Party. She also was accused of approving funds for the church that were not documented by the local Communist authorities in charge of Protestant denominations, known as the Committee of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement of the Protestant Churches and the Christian Council.
Reports from local Christians reveal additional accusations the government has brought against Hao:
Other charges include: ‘illegal business operations,’ ‘inciting subversion of state power,’ ‘picking quarrels and provoking trouble,’ and so on.
A report from UCA News indicate that Hao will fight this sentence, but that she is also standing fast to her convictions and confident that God will bring about her release.
It appears, from this report and also from studies done by persecution watchdog Open Doors, that China’s crackdown on Christians will only intensify.
Open Doors says that many Chinese Christian churches who do not submit to the Communist Party will be “forced to split up into small groups and gather in different locations, keeping a low-profile so as not to be detected by the sub-district officer or neighborhood committee.”
Hao Zhiwei has counted the cost of the gospel and has counted it as worthy of any persecution that comes her way, even imprisonment. FISM News will continue to follow her potential appeal of this ruling.