Why is China tearing down church crosses? Because it’s terrified of religion
While the massive demolition of church and cross in Zhejiang Province is still ongoing, the article points out that China’s Zhejiang Provincial government is engaged in this “cruel and bizarre campaign against Christians” because it is “terrified” of the “uncontrollable” spread of Christianity in the south-east province. Click here for everything you need to know China’s ongoing anti-church campaign.
08/06/2014 China (The Spectator)– Since the beginning of this year, China has been engaged in a cruel and bizarre campaign against Christians in the south-eastern province of Zhejiang. Its main target is Wenzhou, a city known as ‘China’s Jerusalem’ because a million of its eight million residents are Christian.
Wenzhou’s 2,000 churches display hundreds of crosses that illuminate the skyline (a pattern familiar to any visitor to South Korea, where even the smallest towns sprout neon crosses). Now China wants those crosses taken down, and fast.
According to AP, at the end of July ‘200 congregants rushed to the Longgang Huai En Church in Wenzhou to protect their building – but to no avail. They ended up watching helplessly from the sidelines as police used a crane to tear off the 10-foot-tall cross that topped the building’s steeple.’
Often the Christians fight back. When the cross on the church in Wuxi village was torn off, a member of the congregation used his welding torch to replace it. He was arrested for operating a welding business without a licence. Worshippers at other churches have parked heavy lorries in front of their buildings in order to protect them.
Such impudence has made authorities in Zheijang even more obsessive in their campaign against crosses – and sometimes the buildings underneath them. A mega-church in the port city of Ningbo received a demolition order after a party official was reportedly appalled by the size of its cross. In almost every case, local authorities cite building regulations. Typically the victims are Protestant congregations authorised by the state.
For many years, China’s most persecuted Christians have been members of underground Protestant ‘house churches’ and Catholics loyal to the Vatican. In 2008, however, there was enough evidence of Beijing’s increased tolerance of unofficial worship for the US State Department to remove China from its human rights blacklist.