So far, at least 11 people planning to attend have been forbidden to leave China, and many others have come under pressure. Many fear Beijing is moving to exert control over underground Christians.
But when a grouping of house churches decided to send 230 delegates to attend the Lausanne Congress, the government stepped in.
Abraham Liu Guan is a church elder who tried to leave Sunday for the meeting. Authorities warned him not to meet NPR, but in a phone interview he explained what happened at Beijing airport customs. “The border defense people said they’d received a notice from the State Administration for Religious Affairs and the Ministry of Public Security. It said our participation in this meeting threatened state security, and they should not let us pass customs,” Guan said.
Some of those who have been turned back have had their passports confiscated. One delegate has been placed in detention. Four have been prevented from leaving their homes.
Pray that this maybe changed and that they make it to Cape Town for the start on Sunday.