BEIJING, China — The Chinese Communist Party is offering rewards for information on house churches. The program begun in Heilongjiang has spread to additional cities.
Bitter Winter magazine reports that rewards for reporting suspected “illegal” religious activity are as high as 100,000 renminbi (U.S. $14,000).
In July, the Public Security Department in Hainan province posted a notice of reward for “clues on Xie Jiao.” The term “Xie Jiao” means “evil cult” but is used to refer to any religious activity not sanctioned by the Chinese Communist Party.
Government propaganda such as “Don’t believe in any religion other than the Communist Party” has also been posted throughout the country.
Catholic Bishop James Su Zhimin was arrested in 1996 and again in 1997 and has not been seen since 2003.
An estimated 900,000 to 1.8 million Uyghur Muslims currently are in 1,300 detention camps, where many forms of abuse have been reported.
China is No. 23 on Open Doors’ 2020 World Watch List of places most difficult to be a Christian.