Ps. Wang Yi Imprisoned in China for Christ

Pastor Wang Yi

왕 이 목사

ARRESTED DECEMBER 2018 IN CHINA

Imprisoned for 2 years

Prisoner Name
Pastor Wang Yi
Location
Prisoner Profile

Pastor Wang Yi is the influential leader of Early Rain Covenant Church in the city of Chengdu, Sichuan province – one of the best-known house churches in China. He and his wife, Jiang Rong, were detained in  December  2018  and  charged  with  “inciting  subversion  of  state  power”  and  “illegal  business operations.” If convicted, Pastor Wang could face up to 15 years in prison. A former law professor, Pastor Wang has been vocal in calling on the state to uphold religious liberties. Early Rain Covenant Church had been under pressure from the authorities for some time but matters escalated on Dec. 9, 2018. That night and the next day, police raided church members’ homes and arrested them. By the end of the week, about 150 church leaders and seminary students were in police custody, and the church had been forcibly closed. Since then most of those arrested have been released, including Pastor Wang’s wife, Jiang (released June  11,  2019),  and  church  elder  Li  Yingqiang  (released  Aug.  19  2019).  However,  several  others including  Pastor Wang and  Deacon Tan  Defu, remain  incarcerated. Those  who have  been released remain  under  surveillance.  In  July  2019,  the  defense  lawyer  for  Pastor  Wang  Yi  was  barred  from meeting with his client and officials assigned different lawyers to his case, even though he specifically chose his own lawyers prior to his arrest.

Church members are very worried about their pastor and have received very little information about his condition or the progress of his case. Since the crackdown, some Early Rain church members have been sent back to their hometowns and banned from Chengdu. Others have lost jobs or been evicted. Church elder Su Bingsen was released in April 2019 and was flown home to Fujian in the company of security officials; his family was evicted from their home while he was in custody. Some of those who were released say they were abused and deprived of food and water.

Early Rain may have been targeted because of its open approach to church mission, which included posting  sermons  online  and  street  evangelism.  The  church  also  ran  a  Bible  school  for  about  100 students and had a primary school. Its meetings around the city regularly attracted more than 800 people  each  week.  Pastor  Wang  himself  has  been  a  prominent  campaigner  for  greater  religious freedom. In 2018, he wrote a declaration signed by hundreds of Chinese pastors, which includes a statement  of  Christian beliefs  and  a  call for an  end  to  persecution; it  also  recognizes  the Chinese government’s authority. Many of those in China who have signed the ‘Declaration for the Sake of the Christian Faith’ have suffered persecution since.

None of his close associates are certain where Wang Yi is being held, since officials have not released that information, and Wang Yi’s chosen lawyers were prevented from either seeing him or working on his case. The provided address is one of the locations where he could likely be held.

UPDATE: 

Wang Yi Sentenced to Nine Years in Prison – Dec. 2019 

On Dec. 30, Pastor Wang Yi was sentenced at the Intermediate People’s Court of Chengdu City, Sichuan province after a secret Dec. 26 trial. He was charged with “instigating subversion of state power” and “illegal business management” for being the senior pastor of Early Rain Covenant Church. Along with the nineyear sentence, he was sentenced to deprivation of his political rights for three years plus a $7,000 penalty. 

UPDATE: 

Wang Yi Will Not Appeal – January 2020 

According to Pastor Wang Yi’s lawyer, the Presbyterian pastor will not appeal his nine-year prison sentence. Instead, he will serve it in full. His lawyer said, “God is continuing his ministry … by moving him from the courtroom to prison.”

His attorney also recounted how security personnel came and took Wang Yi’s parents by force to his secret trial on Dec. 26, but his wife, Jiang Rong, was not allowed to attend.

Wang Yi was much thinner than before, but he was in a good mental state. Continue to pray for his health while he serves his sentence and for the Early Rain Church. 

UPDATE: 

Photo of Wang Yi in Prison Released – March 2020 

An anonymous Early Rain church member received a photo of Wang Yi in prison taken on March 25. The person who provided the photo said it was intended to let people who care for him know his current situation. (You can view the photo here https://vomkorea.com/en/2020/04/09/vomk-report-95/) 

 

 

How to write a letter

Click the button above to print Scripture verses in the prisoner’s language. You can cut and paste them to your letter.

Address for Mailing

Wang Yi,
Chengdu Detention Center,
Zhengyi Road #3, Anjing Town,Pi County,
Chengdu City,Sichuan Province, Zip code 611731,
People’s Republic of China

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“Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them,
and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body.” 

Hebrews 13:3