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In China, religious freedom is elusive, at best. Twenty-five years after the uprising in Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Chinese authorities are targeting people who want to practice other beliefs outside of traditional China religions. Christians and Muslims are two of the prime targets for government suppression.

Christians

The persecution of Christians in China has been rapidly increasing. Members of Protestant and Catholic organizations defying the order to register with the government may be fined, arrested and their churches may be shuttered. In an effort to thwart the spread of Christianity, crosses and steeples are being forcibly removed at provinces throughout the country and some churches are being outright demolished. The recent conviction and 12 year prison sentence of Pastor Zhang Shaojie of the Nanle County Christian Church on exaggerated charges, is another example that Chinese authorities are willing to go to great lengths to control religious freedoms.

Muslims

Muslims are another group that is no stranger to persecution by Chinese authorities. Some Muslim places of worship have been closed and there have been raids on schools which have led to injuries and deaths. Other constraints include the seizing of religious literature and limitations on the study of the Quran. Some Imams have had their sermons monitored and been forced to attend political training. Muslim children have also been banned from mosques. During recent Ramadan celebrations certain groups were forbidden from fasting and other religious practices. Muslims who defied the ban were faced with potential detention and arrest.

ULC

In stark contrast to the situation in China, the Universal Life Church (ULC) is unique example of religious tolerance; it is the only religious organization in the world that embraces people of all beliefs and faiths. Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and anyone practicing any religion is welcome and invited to become ordained.

It can be a daily struggle for people in China who desire to pursue a religion that is not one of the traditional Chinese religions. The Universal Life Church takes the opposite approach and welcomes all.

Category: Universal Life Church

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