Date: January 9, 2019
“No one can force me to renounce my faith,” says pastor in public letter.
Barnabas Aid, a leading relief agency for the persecuted Church, has urged Christians to pray for an imprisoned pastor from Chengdu city in Sichuan Province of China. Around a hundred Chinese Christians were imprisoned last month from the Early Rain Covenant Church in Chengdu including Pastor Wang Yi and his wife, Jiang Rong.
They were reportedly detained on allegations of “inciting subversion of state power.” But Pastor Wang Yi has released a “Letter from a Chengdu jail” in which he makes clear that he does not seek to overthrow the state but to worship freely.
He powerfully writes: “Separate me from my wife and children, ruin my reputation, destroy my life and my family – the authorities are capable of doing all of these things. However, no one in this world can force me to renounce my faith.”
Barnabas Aid has launched a global initiative to pray for Pastor Wang Yi through their new webpage “Christian Prisoners of Conscience.” The charity has released the following prayer for use in public and private intercession:
Please join us in prayer: We praise You, Lord Jesus Christ, for the faith and boldness of Pastor Wang Yi and his willingness to suffer for Your Name. Please send Your Holy Spirit to strengthen him, his wife Jiang Rong, and all the members of his church, moment by moment, as they endure their time in prison. Give them the peace that You promised to Your followers, the peace that the world cannot give. Please use Pastor Wang Yi during his time in prison to be a wonderful witness for You to other prisoners and to the guards. We ask, too, that all those detained will be released in Your perfect timing. We pray also that the living God will touch the hearts of the Chinese authorities, causing them to realize that Christians bring harmony, compassion and love to a society. Lead them to respond positively to Pastor Wang’s letter appealing for freedom of religion in China. We ask this in the Name of Christ. Amen.