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ICC NOTE: Pastor Han Chung-Reol has been assisting North Korean refugees in Changbai as merely a minister would in other capacities. According to CBN it appears the minister was not exactly politically active, potentially eliminating that as a motive for his brutal murder. Christians in China appear to be facing threats from both sides as they face persecution from the Chinese government and those near North Korea face similar threats from its neighbors. 

5/3/2016 China (CBN) – A Chinese pastor who served North Korean refugees and encouraged them to return to their country to minister to others was martyred in Changbai, China, on April 30.

According to The Voice of the Martyrs, Pastor Han Chung-Reol was 49-years-old, married and had a son and a daughter. He pastored a government-sanctioned Three Self-Church in Changbai.

Han was ethnically Korean but Chinese by birth and citizenship.

Pastor Han left his church building at 2 p.m. Six hours later his mangled body was found on the side of the Changbai mountain.

“There were multiple knife wounds on his stomach from repeated stabbings, and his head had been chopped by an axe,” Rev. Eric Foley from VOM wrote in a blog. His belongings, including his phone, were confiscated.

Foley believes Han was killed by North Koreans for his activity, not only helping refugees from the North, but encouraging them to go back and share the love of God with others.

“The North Koreans who killed Pastor Han returned to North Korea, as everyone who encountered Pastor Han always did,” Foley said. “They reported their story about their encounter with him. I am sure their superiors were eager to receive this report, in every detail.”

Foley called Han a wise man who was “devoted to helping North Koreans enter the Kingdom of God, not the Kingdom of South Korea.”

“Pastor Han was not a broker, not a human rights activist, not a guest on radio programs, not a speaker in pulpits,” Foley wrote. “He was a pastor, and all he was doing was pastoring anyone who came to him. And then he would send them home.”

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