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ICC Note: The following report was published yesterday by Mission Network News. It’s unclear if the couple attacked by police in this report are associated with the families that ICC reported were being harrassed in Lao Cai Province last month. What the report does emphasize is that Vietnamese Christians still face severe treatment at the hands of authorities for choosing to follow after Christ. Although it is technically illegal to do so, police and local authorities regularly attempt to intimidate newly converted families into recanting their new “Western” faith and returning to their original belief system. 
7/23/2013 Vietnam (MNN) – A young Vietnamese couple who accepted Christ last month were threatened by officials and beaten.
Local authorities hit the wife in the face with a stick, according to a contact with Voice of the Martyrs (VOM).
Authorities threatened to take the couple’s land and home if they don’t return to Buddhism and deny their new faith in Christ.
The couple survives through subsistence farming, and they have three boys aged 10, 12, and 14. The husband is afraid they will lose their land and have no way of supporting their family. The wife is afraid of further beatings. Their pastor is trying to help, but he lives in another village 15 miles away.
92% of Vietnamese people are Buddhist and only 1% are Christian, according to NationMaster.com. Christians in the communist state of Vietnam are seen as agents of the West and are regarded with suspicion. The government requires permits for larger gatherings–but will issue them last minute or not at all to make it difficult on churches.
Furthermore, it’s illegal to import Christian materials; last year over a dozen Christians were arrested for their faith. The World Watch List labels Vietnam as a nation with “severe persecution,” the second worst rank for oppression of Christians. Please pray for safety and provision for this family.

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