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Chinese church minister banished back to farming

East Asia

Chinese church minister banished back to farming

Worshippers in Mongolia. Photo credit: Asia News

A church minister in Inner Mongolia was banished from his church by religious authorities and forced to return to the countryside to work as a farmer, after refusing to allow his congregation to come under state control.

Ding Zhanmin was expelled under escort by officials from the Religious Affairs Bureau on 19 March 2018. Despite being threatened and offered money for his parish, Ding had refused for the Catholic church in Beishaliang to be registered under the government’s official Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association.

One member of the church said, “Ding remained faithful to his conscience and the principles gained in the underground Church over the years. In the end he had nothing left but to lose his parish and return to being a farmer.”

Authorities are now expected to impose a new leadership on the church.