Encouraging News From China
Stephen McGarveyStephen McGarvey's weblog
- 2006 Aug 23
In the latest issue of Christianity Today, David Aikman has some thoughts on the state of the Christian Church in China:
Sometimes meetings take place at the White House that are hardly reported on at the time but that, in retrospect, turn out to have great historical significance. One such barely noticed meeting may have occurred last May, when President Bush welcomed three Chinese Christians to what is known as "the Yellow Oval Office," a reception room in the private quarters of the White House. The writer Yu Jie and two Christian lawyers, Wang Yi of Chengdu University and Li Baiguang, the director of a Beijing research center that seeks to protect the legal rights of Chinese farmers, were in Washington for a Hudson Institute–sponsored conference on religious freedom in China...
What was different about the May White House meeting was not only the public identification of America's head of state with representatives of China's house churches.... It also signaled the changing makeup of China's house church leaders. Yu Jie, for example, a writer who sold a million copies of his first book of observations on Chinese society, Fire and Ice, was not a Christian when I first met him in 2002. Nor were the lawyers Wang Yi and Li Baiguang.
Yet in the past two years, according to Yu Jie, who appears to have converted to Christianity in 2004, there has been a major movement toward Christianity among Chinese intellectuals.... What has changed the situation is a new focus on legal rights for ordinary Chinese and especially for Chinese Christians.
Read the entire article: 'A More Practical Application'