The body is suffering

The body is suffering

The body is suffering

A Chinese Christian encourages fellow believers to pray without ceasing for the Church in his homeland.

Two decades ago, Bob Fu and his wife were able to escape persecution in China. They fled to the United States as religious refugees in 1997 and founded ChinaAid in 2002 "to bring international attention to China's gross human rights violations and to promote religious freedom and rule of law in China."

He says we must not forget those suffering for their faith in China.

"In the Christian faith, we are one body of Christ," Fu references. "If one part of the body suffers, the whole Church suffers, so we need to … pray for them more earnestly for divine intervention for those who are in prison."

Fu, Bob (ChinaAid) Fu

The government has destroyed church buildings, and in some cases, entire congregations have been arrested. Before escaping the country, he and his wife were imprisoned for two months for "illegal evangelism" in 1996.

"Some pastors are sentenced to 12 years, 14 years' imprisonment for simply refusing to take down the cross from the rooftops of their church building," Fu relays.

He notes Wang Yi, pastor of Early Rain Covenant Church, as an example of one who has been persecuted for years.

Churches in China must register with the government to operate legally, and they are required to post the Communist Party flag and sing patriotic songs before starting their formal worship services. Children cannot attend church, and the party requires Christians to sign a form renouncing their faith.

For Fu, that is reason enough to lift up Chinese believers in prayer throughout the year.