House church pastor imprisoned in China

A pastor in Hubei Province, China is facing up to 10 years in prison for fraud charges resulting from her refusal to comply with government regulations on religion, surpassing the sentence of persecuted house church pastor Wang Yi.

Hao Zhiwei has been operating a house church under a legal Three-Self church, but was recently asked in July to “understand, support and cooperate with the government’s administrative decisions from the perspective of ensuring the safety of the lives and property of religious people.”

For her refusal to comply, Zhiwei was charged with fraud for church tithes she received, as she is not a legally recognized pastor trained in a communist government seminary.

The Three-Self Patriotic movement is a religious umbrella organization beholden to the Chinese Communist Party that all churches in China must be registered to if they are to operate legally, putting house churches in jeopardy.

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