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July 13th, 2011
09:14 PM ET

Amid growing pressure, churches in China 'are at a critical moment,' pastor says

By Eunice Yoon, CNN

Beijing, China (CNN) - The congregants were seated in rows of folding chairs, clasping their hands in prayer or studying passages in their Bibles.

The choir was sitting up front ready to sing on cue. A cross hung behind the pastor. The service looked like a Christian service you would see pretty much anywhere else in the world. But this is Beijing, and the recent Sunday service was illegal.

I couldn't stop glancing at the door and wonder - are the authorities on their way?

This must be the feeling the people in informal churches here have lived with for decades, I thought.

In China, the government allows religious activity but tightly controls it, requiring Christians to meet at state-approved churches. Many Chinese Christians prefer to worship on their own terms at "house" churches, which generally start as small prayer meetings in people's homes.

In recent years, the authorities have tolerated these underground churches. In fact, the parishioners CNN spoke to seemed unfazed by their church's illegal status.

However, Pastor Ezra Jin, the leader of Zion Church, said these churches are now under tremendous pressure - in the midst of China's crackdown on dissent here in the wake of the Arab Spring.

"We are at a critical moment," he said. "What we need is communication."

House churches, he said, cannot afford to stay silent - one of the reasons he granted CNN rare access to film in his banned church.

Jin is concerned that China's underground churches could become targets of jittery authorities like one of Beijing's biggest house churches, Shouwang. Over the past several months, Shouwang's members have been routinely detained and its leaders put under house arrest.

The government defended its actions, saying the congregants were repeatedly gathering illegally in the streets.

Jin finds the development troubling. He and over a dozen other house church leaders have filed a petition to top Communist Party officials calling for greater religious freedoms.

He fears that without dialogue, underground churchgoers could face a fate similar to practitioners of another - heavily persecuted - spiritual group.

"Shouwang's case could deteriorate into a massive crackdown if not handled properly," he said. "We are trying to send a message to remind the Communist Party leaders not to inflame this incident, not to tackle it the way they did the Falun Gong."

The government officially allows freedom of religion but has long been wary of churches, suspicious they could be a source of opposition.

Pastor Jin doesn't see himself as a threat. He hopes his decision to speak up will foster understanding - and possibly lead to legal recognition of house churches without the government controls.

"We are very aware of what we are doing," he said. "And we are ready to pay the price."

He is a man of God now emboldened despite, or perhaps because of, the Chinese government's heavy hand.

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Asia • Belief • China • Christianity • Church • Church and state • Content Partner • TV-The Situation Room

soundoff (531 Responses)
  1. CRAIG

    Just remember what happened in communist Russia, it could happen in China.God's will will not be snuffed out, no matter how much we try.

    July 15, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
    • Snuffles

      Ya, cuz you can't snuff out what doesn't exist.

      July 16, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Usually it's god doing the snuffing Look at all the tornadoes and tsunamis and diseases he's sent us. Wow, I guess that means god is quite the murderous as-shole too.

      July 16, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
  2. SnowVeil

    @Muneef, it's only the Christian-majority sphere that has any freedom of conscience. Other belief systems don't allow proper freedom or equality thus no proper justice there. Exceptions apply: there are some mimickers of the former Christendom.

    July 15, 2011 at 8:15 am |
    • JohnR

      The "Christian sphere" has freedom of conscience only because that is where secular humanism first arose. Left to the Christians, we'd still have religious persecution, witch burnings, religious wars, etc, etc.

      July 15, 2011 at 9:45 am |
    • Muneef

      The secular humanism has proved being a failure in the Justical system that has lead to increase to crime...protecting the criminals rights more that the victim rights to a peaceful living...
      You need the Torah's sharia law an eye for an eye and see would the country be cleaned and trial,prison costs will be reduced and saved to the good people who respect the law not who break it since they waste much of the country's earnings..

      July 15, 2011 at 10:13 am |
  3. Muneef

    Where was the world when Muslims suffered the same?

    http://wapedia.mobi/en/Islam_in_China
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persecution_of_Muslims

    July 15, 2011 at 2:03 am |
    • Reality

      Where were Muslims when the following took place?

      The Islamic Conquest of India – 11th to 18th century

      ■"The likely death toll is somewhere between 2 million and 80 million. The geometric mean of those two limits is 12.7 million. "

      and the 19 million killed in the Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C by Islamics.

      and more recently

      1a) 179 killed in Mumbai/Bombay, 290 injured

      1b) Assassination of Benazir Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh

      2) 9/11, 3000 mostly US citizens, 1000’s injured

      3) The 24/7 Sunni-Shiite centuries-old blood feud currently being carried out in Iraq, US troops killed in action, 3,483 and 925 in non combat roles. 99,901 – 109,143 Iraqi civilians killed as of 3/3/2011/, mostly due to suicide bombers, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/ and http://www.defenselink.mil/news/casualty.pdf

      4) Kenya- In Nairobi, about 212 people were killed and an estimated 4000 injured; in Dar es Salaam, the attack killed at least 11 and wounded 85.[2]

      5) Bali-in 2002-killing 202 people, 164 of whom were foreign nationals, and 38 Indonesian citizens. A further 209 people were injured.

      6) Bali in 2005- Twenty people were killed, and 129 people were injured by three bombers who killed themselves in the attacks.

      7) Spain in 2004- killing 191 people and wounding 2,050.

      8. UK in 2005- The bombings killed 52 commuters and the four radical Islamic suicide bombers, injured 700.

      9) The execution of an eloping couple in Afghanistan on 04/15/2009 by the Taliban.

      10) – Afghanistan: US troops 1,141 killed in action, 242 killed in non-combat situations as of 03/03/2011. Over 40,000 Afghan civilians killed due to the dark-age, koranic-driven Taliban acts of horror

      11) The killing of 13 citizen soldiers at Ft. Hood by a follower of the koran.

      12) 38 Russian citizens killed on March 29, 2010 by Muslim women suicide bombers.

      13) The May 28, 2010 attack on a Islamic religious minority in Pakistan, which have left 98 dead,

      14) Lockerbie is known internationally as the site where, on 21 December 1988, the wreckage of Pan Am Flight 103 crashed as a result of a terrorist bomb. In the United Kingdom the event is referred to as the Lockerbie disaster, the Lockerbie bombing, or simply Lockerbie. Eleven townspeople were killed in Sherwood Crescent, where the plane's wings and fuel tanks plummeted in a fiery explosion, destroying several houses and leaving a huge crater, with debris causing damage to a number of buildings nearby. The 270 fatalities (259 on the plane, 11 in Lockerbie) were citizens of 21 nations.

      15 The daily suicide and/or roadside and/or mosque bombings in the terror world of Islam.

      16) Bombs sent from Yemen by followers of the koran which fortunately were discovered before the bombs were detonated.

      17) The killing of 58 Christians in a Catholic church in one of the latest acts of horror and terror in Iraq.

      18) Moscow airport suicide bombing: 35 dead, 130 injured. January 25, 2011.

      19) A Pakistani minister, who had said he was getting death threats because of his stance against the country's controversial blasphemy law, was shot and killed Wednesday, 3/2/2011

      20) two American troops killed in Germany by a recently radicalized Muslim, 3/3/2011

      21) the kidnapping and apparent killing of a follower of Zoraster in the dark world of Islamic Pakistan.

      22) Shariatpur, Bangladesh (CNN 3/30/2011) - Hena Akhter's last words to her mother proclaimed her innocence. But it was too late to save the 14-year-old girl. Her fellow villagers in Bangladesh's Shariatpur district had already passed harsh judgment on her. Guilty, they said, of having an affair with a married man. The imam from the local mosque ordered the fatwa, or religious ruling, and the punishment: 101 lashes delivered swiftly, deliberately in public. Hena dropped after 70 and died a week later.

      July 15, 2011 at 7:38 am |
  4. SnowVeil

    Communists or hedonists, atheists have no respect for anyone. No God, no respect.

    July 15, 2011 at 12:00 am |
    • gozer

      Bad ideas such as Christianity deserve no respect.

      July 15, 2011 at 1:00 am |
    • SnowVeil

      USA should get split like Sudan if secular Americans keep blaspheming. Everyone including Muslims will be safer with Christians. American theists need a safe haven in the con-tinent. Atheists always annihilate believers of any kind saying the planet got over-populated.

      July 15, 2011 at 7:50 am |
    • gozer

      yeah, we know how well folks from different religious cults such as Christianity and Islam get along together. Their guidebooks even tell them to kill each other, and they do, especially the muslims. No need for atheists to do the killing for them.

      The most peaceful, lowest crime countries in the world are secular. Start your reading about that here, numerous references within:
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,2076.0.html

      July 15, 2011 at 9:46 am |
  5. Laowaiblog

    China is a country that operates differently from the United States. It is important that we do not judge it or use our own value terms to asses whether its actions are good or bad. It has a different governing style, and the population is four times as much as the U.S. This is not to claim that China's actions are good or bad, this is to claim that we must first understand it before we can pass judgment.
    This is an interesting website that provides opinion and views by expert writers about China. Check it out: http://laowaiblog.com/

    July 14, 2011 at 11:48 pm |
  6. SnowVeil

    Christians are better treated in China than in Europe and USA. Chinese communists don't blaspheme like Western atheists; they are too busy to topple the West.

    July 14, 2011 at 10:20 pm |
    • Tim

      Glad they're too busy to topple us.

      July 14, 2011 at 10:25 pm |
    • Nonimus

      hmm... is that why there are "underground" churches in China?

      July 15, 2011 at 12:31 pm |
    • gijane

      they don't blaspheme but they'll put their hands on you and detain you for "gathering illegally." in some cases death and/or imprisonment w/ labor! http://www.persecution.com

      July 15, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
  7. Sue

    Well, Christianity has never been a good fit with capitalism, so maybe it's finding a better home in a communist state.

    Central planning by an enti-ty that can't be over-ruled, severe punishment way beyond the crime committed, restricted freedoms, media restrictions, deluding the masses -all sounds just like both Christianity and communism. Great fit there, hopefully we can rid ourselves of the religion here eventually. The Chinese can have it.

    July 14, 2011 at 9:28 pm |
  8. Reality

    What all governments should promulgate:

    1. origin: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20E1EFE35540C7A8CDDAA0894DA404482

    "New Torah For Modern Minds

    Abraham, the Jewish patriarch, probably never existed. Nor did Moses. The entire Exodus story as recounted in the Bible probably never occurred. The same is true of the tumbling of the walls of Jericho. And David, far from being the fearless king who built Jerusalem into a mighty capital, was more likely a provincial leader whose reputation was later magnified to provide a rallying point for a fledgling nation.

    Such startling propositions – the product of findings by archaeologists digging in Israel and its environs over the last 25 years – have gained wide acceptance among non-Orthodox rabbis. But there has been no attempt to disseminate these ideas or to discuss them with the laity – until now.

    The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, which represents the 1.5 million Conservative Jews in the United States, has just issued a new Torah and commentary, the first for Conservatives in more than 60 years. Called "Etz Hayim" ("Tree of Life" in Hebrew), it offers an interpretation that incorporates the latest findings from archaeology, philology, anthropology and the study of ancient cultures. To the editors who worked on the book, it represents one of the boldest efforts ever to introduce into the religious mainstream a view of the Bible as a human rather than divine docu-ment.

    2. Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

    The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.
    earlychristianwritings.com/theories.html

    For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

    Current RCC problems:

    Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

    3. Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

    Current problems:

    Adulterous preachers, pedophiliac clerics, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

    4. Mohammed was an illiterate, womanizing, lust and greed-driven, warmongering, hallucinating Arab, who also had embellishing/hallucinating/plagiarizing scribal biographers who not only added "angels" and flying chariots to the koran but also a militaristic agenda to support the plundering and looting of the lands of non-believers.

    This agenda continues as shown by the ma-ssacre in Mumbai, the as-sas-sinations of Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh, the conduct of the seven Muslim doctors in the UK, the 9/11 terrorists, the 24/7 Sunni suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the 24/7 Shiite suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the Islamic bombers of the trains in the UK and Spain, the Bali crazies, the Kenya crazies, the Pakistani “koranics”, the Palestine suicide bombers/rocketeers, the Lebanese nutcases, the Taliban nut jobs, the Ft. Hood follower of the koran, and the Filipino “koranics”.

    And who funds this muck and stench of terror? The warmongering, Islamic, Shiite terror and torture theocracy of Iran aka the Third Axis of Evil and also the Sunni "Wannabees" of Saudi Arabia.

    Current crises:

    The Sunni-Shiite blood feud and the warmongering, womanizing (11 wives), hallucinating founder.

    5. Hinduism (from an online Hindu site) – "Hinduism cannot be described as an organized religion. It is not founded by any individual. Hinduism is God centered and therefore one can call Hinduism as founded by God, because the answer to the question ‘Who is behind the eternal principles and who makes them work?’ will have to be ‘Cosmic power, Divine power, God’."

    The caste/laborer system, reincarnation and cow worship/reverence are problems when saying a fair and rational God founded Hinduism."

    Current crises:

    The caste system and cow worship/reverence.

    6. Buddhism- "Buddhism began in India about 500 years before the birth of Christ. The people living at that time had become disillusioned with certain beliefs of Hinduism including the caste system, which had grown extremely complex. The number of outcasts (those who did not belong to any particular caste) was continuing to grow."
    "However, in Buddhism, like so many other religions, fanciful stories arose concerning events in the life of the founder, Siddhartha Gautama (fifth century B.C.):"

    Archaeological discoveries have proved, beyond a doubt, his historical character, but apart from the legends we know very little about the circu-mstances of his life. e.g. Buddha by one legend was supposedly talking when he came out of his mother's womb.

    Bottom line: There are many good ways of living but be aware of the hallucinations, embellishments, lies, and myths surrounding the founders and foundations of said rules of life.

    Then, apply the Five F rule: "First Find the Flaws, then Fix the Foundations". And finally there will be religious peace and religious awareness in the world!!!!!

    July 14, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • herbert juarez

      I have found the flaws!The"flaws"appear to be all concentrated in your post! Now on to phase 2.

      July 15, 2011 at 8:25 pm |
  9. RightTurnClyde

    communists hate Christianity and yet it sur_vived and even flour_ished under co_m_munist oppression. It was the only ray of hope in bleak exis_tance of communism: Russia, Hungary, E.German, Czechoslovakia, Romania, Poland, Cuba, Salvador, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania. Korea, Vietnam .. it survived .. and China . it survived. It is the one slim ray of hope for some many desperate people. God's will. cen_sor that

    July 14, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • Sue

      Well, Christianity has never been a good fit with capitalism, so maybe it's finding a better home and a better fit in a communist state.

      Central planning by an enti-ty that can't be over-ruled, severe punishment way beyond the crime committed, restricted freedoms, media restrictions, deluding the masses -all sounds just like both Christianity and communism. Great fit there, hopefully we can rid ourselves of the religion here eventually. The Chinese can have it.

      July 14, 2011 at 9:29 pm |
    • JohnR

      Christianity may have survived in these lands, but it is hardly "flourishing" in most of them.

      July 15, 2011 at 9:46 am |
  10. someoneelse

    Good people are good. Bad people are bad. Bad people sometimes do good things, but it takes religion to make good people do bad things.

    July 14, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
    • Tootoo

      Must be why the Chinese govt and other communist regimes do all those bad things–because they're religious? Get real.

      July 14, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
    • someoneelse

      Tootoo, those people are already bad. I'm sorry your reading skills are so lacking that you could not understand two simple sentences using rather elementary adjectives.

      July 14, 2011 at 6:54 pm |
  11. JW

    I saw that Laughing

    July 14, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
    • Laughing

      haha yeah, I think it was my comp (or maybe that dreaded moderator that seems to have a vendetta against free speech according to both atheist and believer who feel they are being censored). In anycase, looks all fixed now.

      July 14, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  12. Laughing

    Is any message getting through.....? Hello?

    (Note, unlike most other people, this message is to see if anything is getting through at all, not just going to awaiting moderation. All my replies are just disappearing)

    July 14, 2011 at 2:17 pm |
    • David Johnson

      The disappearing thing happened to me yesterday. I never figured out why...

      Cheers!

      July 14, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  13. Rhonda

    Just wondering... what do you think is the reason that the Chinese Church continues to grow in numbers in spite of government and social pressures?

    July 14, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
    • gozer

      Simple. Christianity is a virulent self-propagating meme, a mind virus that the inflicted have long been effective at propagating broadly to other similarly weak-minded, susceptible folk. Nothing more than that, really.

      July 14, 2011 at 2:10 pm |
    • Isaac

      A bible answer. Christ prophesied in Matt 24:14, "And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come." Christianity from its inception was destined to be a global religion and as such has withstood persecution for centuries from resistant regimes.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • Nonimus

      People like to try new things.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • Tom

      Its the free beer at services.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @Tom

      LOL...!

      Peace...

      July 14, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
    • Walter

      Based on my experience it is the fact Christian girls are much more interesting in bed. They spend so much time thinking about sin that when they sin they do it well.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • JohnR

      It's new. When something is new and small and carries the promise of something different, it can grow fairly explosively.

      July 14, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • jonathan

      it's the same reason in Egypt and in the Roman Empire..the more they oppressed them the more they multiplied and grew..

      Many Christians in China have said, "persecution good for church" 🙂

      July 14, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
    • jonathan

      I should have mentioned that it's the same for the slave in Egypt and Christians in the Roman Empire ..the more they oppressed then the more they multiplied and grew..... in 1950 there were less than a million Christians in China now in just 50 years there is more than a hundred million with a reported 20-30 thousand per DAY converts... I say 20 thousand a day!!!! 🙂

      July 14, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
    • AvdBerg

      For a better understanding we invite you to visit our website http://www.gaychristian101.com

      July 14, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • ....

      Troll Alert....AvdBerg! Don't wast your time!

      July 14, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  14. AvdBerg

    For a better understanding what the people of China must do to be reunited with God we invite you to read Can Christianity or Any Other Religion Save You? listed on our website http://www.aworlddeceived.ca

    July 14, 2011 at 1:57 pm |
  15. Artist

    I say if the christians want to invade china or save their brothers and sisters, let them go over there. As for the chinese christians, when you are beaten and locked up PRAY HARDER. China is not our business and we have no right to impose upon them. Let the people of China rise up if they wish and earn their freedom.

    July 14, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
    • T's Grl

      Good try at deflecting the issue but no one suggested we invade China about this outrage. We need to hear about bigotry of all kinds, wherever it exists, so its exposed and hopefully ashamed into doing what is right. Its also enlightening to read posts from those who just can't seem to offer anything constructive. Guess all is well, and always will be, in your world.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • Artist

      T's Grl

      Guess all is well, and always will be, in your world.
      -----------
      Of course and we should try staying out of other people's worlds.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • Samuel

      This is not the formula that Jesus Christ advocated. He said if you are persecuted in one city flee to another. You preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God, heal the sick, cast out demons, restore sight to the blind and heal the lame back to walking and cleans the leopards. Now don't get mad at me if someone tries to go out and give a leopard a bath. Christ never advocated opposing governments. But he did advocate obeying God with God's power working in you. Don't slap the dragon. He will bite you and later eat you alive. Personally, to protect your mind, draw close to God and resist the devil and he will flee from you. Guaranteed. Without God you are floating in the breeze.

      July 14, 2011 at 1:35 pm |
    • Isaac

      To be a Christian means we have to obey the commands of Christ. One of his commands is to tell others the good news of salvation (Mt 28:19). Some may see this as imposing our views, but we are simply obeying our Lord. And from our perspective it is better to obey God than man. To be silent is simply to cease to be Christian. I believe however, that everyone has a right to refuse to listen. We have been given free will and we can choose to reject God. But we all need to live with the eternal consequences of our choices.

      July 14, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  16. T's Grl

    Appears that freedom is only for those who are non-Christian. If China was mandating people become Christians the world woud be outraged. Opposers to those who want freedom of religion are just a different kind of bigot.

    July 14, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • Laughing

      You are an idiot. It's not like everyone in the world is thrilled with China right now. China does it wants to do and we cna wag our fingers and write letters but we can't stop them, regardless of what they do. To think your comment has even a little merit makes you and anyone who agrees with you a moron.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
    • Artist

      T's Grl

      Appears that freedom is only for those who are non-Christian. If China was mandating people become Christians the world woud be outraged. Opposers to those who want freedom of religion are just a different kind of bigot.
      --------------
      I am guessing you are not from around these parts. People should be free to be delusional. People should also fight and earn their own freedom. This also applies to the ME which we should pull out of. With the number of people in China, I assure you a swarm would overtake the government if the people got a spine and fought for themselves. The sheep religious or non-religious will always be slaughtered. However, when the sheep turn into wolves it will be a different story.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:36 pm |
    • JW

      I dont get the idea that they are really mandating anything.

      July 14, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
    • Samuel

      The first wave of conquest comes with the missionaries. The second wave is actual military conquest. Soon they will be saying " One World One Faith." Do not think for one second that religious authorities will no put out contracts on those who oppose them. If you do not fall in line you die and all that you worked for is divided between the church and the state. China does not want this cancer to infect its nation. Too many Christians owe their allegiance to the Vatican, a nation far from their home shores. That would make them enemy agents.

      July 14, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
  17. Artist

    Whatever happens, god's will will be done so why sweat it chinese christians??????

    July 14, 2011 at 12:01 pm |
    • TampaMan

      What if God's will flies in the face of an autocratic government?

      July 14, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
    • Artist

      TampaMan

      What if God's will flies in the face of an autocratic government?

      ------
      Questions are a moot, whatever happens is god's will. That explains all so there should be no questions. God has to get back to his golf game now.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:39 pm |
  18. Tom

    Farting of US foreign minister used to bring tsunami in rest of the world. But now, those days are gone. Today, It looks like a fart in china brings waves in US. There is a long line of people to comment about china, and no one wants to talk about the foreign policy of US.

    July 14, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  19. James

    So when are we gonna invade China?

    July 14, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • KlausVos

      Never. It would be a geo-political nightmare. Despite having what is probably the strongest and most advanced military in the world, it is difficult enough to occupy two smaller countries. And that doesn't even take into account the nuclear threat.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
    • well

      We will never attack any nation in the defense of Christians being attacked or persecuted.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:16 pm |
    • Vulpes

      We won't have to. The Chinese people will rise up to take care of it. It is the lesson of history.

      July 14, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
  20. Vulpes

    Let's all welcome "Michael", "Kevin" and "James" to the discussion. These posters are from Chinese government department of propaganda. Notice the western names ... not very clever. But what do you expect from the government? The oppressive Chinese government will fall. It is the lesson of history. I suggest to all Chinese government worker to work for good of China and not the evil oppression. Support freedom for all people not just the party elite.

    July 14, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • Tom

      Somehow I don't think that this comments section is so important in swaying U.S. opinion that China is monitoring it and posting with fake names in an effort to do damage control. That is a little bit of paranoia you have.

      July 14, 2011 at 11:53 am |
    • Mike Smith

      just google "50 Cent Party"

      July 14, 2011 at 11:57 am |
    • Vulpes

      @Tom: I am not sure what the target audience is that these posters are attempting to reach. However, their posting speak with one voice; that is the voice of the Chinese propaganda. I have seen the same postings in many other articles on CNN on China. It is not illogical for one to come to that conclusion. I am not sure that rises to the level paranoia in any case. Maybe I am wrong, but for China to filter it's citizens web searches and attempt to control and oppress their beliefs I do believe that will indeed take great pains at damage control on a large news service read by many people. Should I now accuse you of being naive? 😉

      July 14, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
    • Vulpes

      @Tom: I did Google "50_Cent_Party" and found a very interesting Wikipedia page. In video game parlance I would say you were "pwned" - 😉

      July 14, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • Tom

      Or maybe they all happen to have an opinion on the issue that is similar and that you disagree with. I wonder which is more likely?

      July 14, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.