According to persecution ministry Voice of the Martyrs Korea, Hmong village leaders recently tortured a Hmong Christian in an attempt to get him and his wife to renounce their new Christian faith.
After the couple refused to abandon their faith in Christ, the villagers hung the man upside down over a fire of spicy peppers. The acrid smoke burned his skin, throat and eyes, until he eventually agreed to renounce his faith. The couple has since fled to another village where they are able to openly follow Christ.
“We are not able to release the name or location of this couple because of the danger they are in, despite their relocation,” said Voice of the Martyrs representative Hyun Sook Foley. “Pray for this couple’s faith and pray that God will soften the village leaders’ hearts toward him.”
Vietnam Committee on Human Rights (VCHR) Website
This latest incident comes only months after the Vietnam Committee on Human Rights (VCHR) submitted a report to the United Nations detailing widespread persecution of Hmong Christians in Vietnam from 2002 to 2017.
“In Vietnam, Christianity is often associated with foreign oppression,” said Representative Foley.
“That is particularly true among the Hmong, who are a minority population who live in the north. Authorities fear that the idea of Jesus as messiah could kindle a revolutionary spirit among the Hmong, leading to revolt.”
Representative Foley noted that although more than 300,000 Hmong have converted to Christianity since the 1980s, they continue to face hostility from other Hmong who are deeply committed to their traditional religious beliefs.
“They face persecution from within their tribe and also from without,” said Representative Foley.
“That is why Voice of the Martyrs Korea is supporting local Vietnamese church leaders to provide persecution preparedness training for Hmong and other Vietnamese Christians.”
Foley explains that the training is important because the persecution in Vietnam is complex, coming from official sources as well as families.
Vietnamese church gathers together to worship
Foley said, “Sometimes it is direct, as in the case of the man who was recently hung upside down over the fire. But sometimes it is indirect. Christians are told that they can have a much more successful life if they give up their faith.”
She says that training from local church leaders is key because they understand better than anyone how to apply the Bible to their specific situation.
Two persecution preparedness training sessions are planned for this fall, with each training session costing approximately 1.5 million KRW and reaching about 30 pastors. Voice of the Martyrs Korea is inviting Korean churches and Christians to stand with Vietnamese Christians by helping to cover the cost of these training events.
Persons wishing to donate through wire transfer should add the phrase “Vietnam” to ensure the funds are directed to this project.
Gifts can be made online at https://vomkorea.com/donation/ or via wire transfer to 국민은행 463501-01-243303 예금주: (사)순교자의소리