(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

Sister Xu
Photo: ChinaAid

After a violent armed raid on their house church, Christians in remote Xinjiang province have been interrogated on suspicion of being a religious cult. One of the leaders remains in detention since the day police, armed with guns and electric batons, ransacked her home and seized property.

On March 15th, a total of 21 Public Security Bureau officials visited Sister Xu's house church located in Qimo County, Kurla City (northwest China), while she was holding a prayer meeting. When the 14 assembled Christians did not answer the door, the officials left without incident. However, later on that evening, after the visiting church members had departed, the police arrived back to the meeting location. In addition to confiscating property, they took fingerprints and blood samples from Xu, her son and husband. All three were taken to the local police station for written statements. Xu's husband, having claimed that he was not a Christian, was released along with their son.

Another one of the house church leaders, Brother Shen, who happened to be summoned and interrogated separately on March 18th, was released within three hours of suffering a heart-related episode triggered by police interrogation. The third leader, Sister Cao, was able to avoid arrest and detainment by fleeing from the area. To learn more about what Christians are facing in China, go to the China Country Report.

Pray that God will strengthen and comfort Sister Xu, and all the members of the Qimo County house church. May He fill them with the reassuring presence of His Holy Spirit, granting them the courage to withstand this trial and the empowerment to overcome it. Ask Him to also touch the hearts of the officials conducting the investigation. May every aspect of this situation work out favourably for these believers, including an imminent release of Sister Xu and complete healing of Brother Shen.