China: Christian summer camps closed down, priests dismissed

Authorities make holding summer youth camps like this one held in 2008, increasingly difficult. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
China has closed several Christian summer camps for children and dismissed two priests for holding a camp, reports Catholic news agency UCAN. The two priests belonged to one of the only two unregistered Catholic churches in Tianshui diocese, in China’s northwest Gansu province. After their dismissal, the Tianshui Municipal Ethnic . . . Read More

‘Is it necessary for the government to do this?’ asks Chinese Christian after church demolition

‘Is it necessary for the government to do this?’ asks Chinese Christian after church demolition
Chinese authorities have demolished a church in Jinan, Shandong province, to make way for further development of the area, Catholic news agency UCAN reports. Liangwang Catholic Church was legally registered with the religious administration. So was Shilihe Church, of the same diocese, demolished earlier this year. A third church, Wangun . . . Read More

China: Beijing churches call for government to respect religious rights

Cross on Dongguang Church against factory name. Shenyang, northeastern China. Shenyang is the capital and largest city of China’s northeast Liaoning Province. It was the site of the 17th-century Manchu capital Mukden, and the imposing Mukden Palace (Shenyang Imperial Palace) is a blend of Manchurian and Tibetan architectural styles. Mausoleums of Qing dynasty emperors can be found at Zhaoling Tomb, amid the pine forests and lakes of Beiling Park, and at Fuling Tomb in the city’s east. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
In a joint declaration, 34 churches in the Chinese capital, Beijing, have called on the government to respect the freedom and rights of religious citizens, advocacy group CSW reports. The churches, which are independent from the state-sanctioned Three-Self Patriotic Movement, committed to “stand together” in the “new environment” that had . . . Read More

Chinese churches ‘more careful who they allow in’, as raids increase

People leaving the church after a service in Shenyang, north-eastern Dongguang province. (Photo: World Watch Monitor)
Churches in China are becoming more careful over who they let in to their buildings, as government pressure increases following the implementation of new religious regulations earlier this year. Local authorities have been pressured to take action. In Guangzhou, for example, the capital of the southern province Guangdong, a local . . . Read More

‘Lack of religious freedom anywhere is a threat everywhere,’ Sam Brownback tells religious freedom summit

‘Lack of religious freedom anywhere is a threat everywhere,’ Sam Brownback tells religious freedom summit
The US Ambassador for International Religious Freedom, Sam Brownback, urged government and faith leaders, and civil society, to work together to enhance global religious freedom, at the opening of the first-ever Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom in Washington DC yesterday (24 July). In his opening words, Brownback, who was appointed in . . . Read More

Myanmar: Peace talks resume but ethnic autonomy not on the agenda

Myanmar's defacto leader Aung San Suu Kyi leaves the 2016 Panglong Conference. (Photo: AUNG HTET/AFP/Getty Images)
A third round of peace talks are taking place in Myanmar this week between armed ethnic groups and government forces, but the military has ruled out discussions on the autonomy that ethnic groups crave. The six-day meeting, which has been dubbed the 21st century ‘Panglong Conference’ after the historic 1947 . . . Read More