GUANGZHOU, China — Police have raided Guangzhou Bible Reformed Church in China’s Guangdong province twice within a month.
The human rights group ChinaAid says the most recent raid occurred June 4 when police officers interrupted the worship service. The police claimed to be there to investigate reports of a crime.
At one point, an undercover police officer seemed intent on manhandling Huang Xiaoning, the church’s pastor, to remove him from the premises. The other congregants were not allowed to continue with the service, instead being told they must report to the police station.
Rather than comply, the pastor and congregation left, reports ChinaAid.
The church – a house church – has refused to join the Three-Self Patriotic Movement, which comprises places of worship sanctioned by the Communist Party of China. Since 2018, Guangzhou Church’s worship services have been raided repeatedly, and the pastor has been detained for as long as five days.
China is No. 16 on Open Doors’ 2023 World Watch List of places most difficult to be a Christian.