Photo: ChinaSource

In a popular internet forum, a young Chinese Christian recently asked if being a Christian and joining the Communist Party can go together, China Source reported on 14 March 2017. One answer came from a surprising source: The Central Committee of the Communist Youth League (CCCYL). It started with a clear “No”, not just to Christianity, but to any religion, and followed up with a lengthy explanation quoting the Communist Party’s constitution. It ended with a warning “to resist religion’s corrosiveness”.

Thomas Muller, analyst for World Watch Research of Open Doors International, which in 2017 listed China as the 39th most difficult country in the world for Christians, comments: “The surprising part is not the official Communist position stated by the CCCYL, but the speed of the reaction by an official organ of the Communist Party in an online forum. It seems to feel the need to reiterate its ideological standpoint again and again. This has become a clear trend in recent times, with the Chinese authorities relying more and more on ideology. This reaction also illustrates once again that Christians in China are limited when it comes to choosing career options. As the China Source article, however, rightly states, this does not mean that God is limited in opening up other opportunities.”