An international response helps free Christians in China.

By September 8, 2003

China (MNN) — Answered prayer and a great response. That are things officials at Voice of the Martyrs are saying helped secure the release of house church leaders in China.

Todd Nettleton is with Voice of the Martyrs. He says, “All six of these have been release now after international pressure including calls to the Chinese embassy, including faxes to the hotel where they were being held. That is what they have credited for being the cause of them being released by the Chinese government.”

Qi Xian-Fa was released from the Kai Yuan Cheng Shi Hotel on August 18 and Goa Chong-Dao on August 25. Shen Shao-Cheng, one of the church’s founders who is more than 80 years old, was the last to be released, on August 27.

These three leaders were separated by government leaders last month, in an attempt to keep their churches from meeting. Nettleton says that prompted them to do something to secure their release. “The Voice of the Martyrs published the fax number of the hotel where (they) were being held. None of the men saw the faxes, but it was clearly indicated to them by their guards that they were being released because of pressure from outside of China.”

Nettleton says the government is cracking down on the house church movement all across the country as more and more people turn to Christ. He says he doesn’t see that changing much. “These people are meeting in fields, houses and in caves. They are trying to bring these Christian groups under government control and I don’t think they’re going to give up. And, I don’t think Christian groups are gonna be willing to come under a government that denies the existence of God. So, we will definitely see more cases like this in the future.”

In the mean time, Nettleton is thanking many of you who prayed and got involved.

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