Barnabas Fund - International Headquarters River Street, Pewsey, Wilthire. Phone: +44 1672 565030 Latitude: 51 deg 23 min 18 sec N Longitude: 1 deg 45 min 48 sec W .
Christians arrested and house church mee...

Email:

Christians arrested and house church meetings banned in Laos

To

Email address:
Separate multiple addresses with a comma (,). Maximum of 10

From

Your name:
Your email address:
Security test:
Please enter the numbers that appear here in the box below.
refresh captcha
CAPTCHA Image
Security code:

Details provided here will never be used in any other context

Christians arrested and house church meetings banned in Laos

Country/Region: South and East Asia, Lao, People's Democratic Republic

Christians in a Laotian village have been ordered to stop worshipping in private homes as several Christians were arrested in different parts of the country.

A pastor and three other Christians were arrested at a house church gathering in Sounya village in Namtha district of Luang Namtha province on 10 July. Pastor Seng Aroun, Souchiad, Naikwang and Kofa were charged with assembling for worship without approval. All but Pastor Aroun were released after three days.

lao-peoples-democratic-republic-4X3.jpg
Map showing the location of Lao Peoples Democratic Republic

They were holding a meeting in Kofa’s home; the Christians in Sounya normally hold their weekly Sunday services in another member’s house. The villagers have now been ordered to stop worshipping in private homes altogether.

Christians in Sounya village have faced persecution since the conversion of around 400 residents in 2002; they have been meeting in homes since the authorities destroyed their church building two years ago.

Faithful convert

Elsewhere, a Christian convert was arrested after he refused to renounce Christ and return to the traditional Lao religion of animism. Vong Veu remains in custody after being arrested on 10 July in Pookong village in the Viengkham district of Luang Prabang province. He was charged with embracing the Christian religion and asked to abandon his faith in order to prove his innocence, but he refused.

In another incident, church elder Abee Weng and three other Christians, Pachua, Bouleuvang and Kae, were arrested on 29 March while travelling back home to Luang Prabang city from Pookong village, where they had been invited by new believers there to help them grow in their faith.

The four were charged with “spreading foreign religion and eradicating Lao traditional religion”, but Pastor Weng insisted that they did not spread the Christian faith and were only guiding new converts. They were released after four days in prison.

Pastors jailed

Two pastors who were arrested in January for “gathering for the purpose of creating turbulent unrest” remain in custody in Khammouan Province. Pastor Wanna and a colleague were detained with eight other Christians including two children. Pastor Wanna, who leads a church in Nakoon village, has been repeatedly arrested and beaten for his Christian activities.

Bounchan Kanthavong, a pastor in Udomsai Province, is nearing the end of a 12 year prison sentence following his conversion to Christianity and preaching of the Gospel that resulted in around 70 people accepting Christ. He was arrested in 1999 and convicted of “treason and sedition” because he had been involved in leading Laotians to abandon the traditional animist faith and follow Christ; the Lao authorities consider Christianity to be a foreign religion and thus a threat to national unity.

Following Pastor Kanthavong’s detention, his wife Sengkham took over the leadership of their small Christian community; it has grown to more than 3,000 believers today. In April this year, the authorities told Pastor Kanthavong, a father of five, that they were willing to release him if he renounced Christ and separated from his wife.

Help us: Share this article

Email:

Christians arrested and house church meetings banned in Laos

To

Email address:
Separate multiple addresses with a comma (,). Maximum of 10

From

Your name:
Your email address:
Security test:
Please enter the numbers that appear here in the box below.
refresh captcha
CAPTCHA Image
Security code:

Details provided here will never be used in any other context

christian, persecution, charity, church, persecuted, sookhdeo, Islam

Other articles

Follow Barnabas

or

receive news & appeal emails as they are published

From Twitter

From Twitter_icon

    Daily prayer

    Daily prayer_icon
    • Give thanks that the authorities in Egypt are pursuing justice for the Christian community following widespread violence against them by supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood last summer. Christians were scapegoated by the Islamists for the downfall of President Mohammed Morsi. On 14 August, mobs torched scores of churches, Christian institutions and private property in what was described as the worst single day of violence against the Egyptian Church since the 14th century. Over 100 Muslims have been charged in connection with the attacks; at the time of writing they were due to stand trial for rioting, attacking citizens and targeting the churches and homes of Christians. Pray that justice will be done and restitution made to churches and individuals who suffered material losses. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Tue, Jul 2014 00:00

    • “I was so happy and treasure this Word of God. It brings me so much peace and hope.” Uu Dee KoMang, an elderly woman in Burma (Myanmar), was one of many Christians who recently received a Kachin Bible through Barnabas Fund. Two years ago the Burmese army entered her village and ordered everyone to leave within the hour. Uu Dee took some clothes and food and ran, but her Bible was too heavy to carry. Now living in a relocation camp, she regretted not taking it, until the Bibles from Barnabas arrived. Pray that God’s Word will comfort and strengthen these believers who have lost so much and will give them encouragement for the future. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Mon, Jul 2014 00:00

    • Pray for three Christian prisoners of conscience in Vietnam who are being denied access to Bibles and other sources of spiritual support. Prison guards in Hanoi and Thanh Hoa province have refused to allow Le Quoc Quan, a lawyer and activist, and bloggers Maria To Phong Tan and Paul Tran Minh Nhat to receive visits from their church leaders and have prevented them from receiving Communion. Maria is serving a ten-year prison sentence in a harsh labour camp; she has been beaten by other inmates. Pray that the Lord will sustain and build up the faith of our brothers and sister as they cry out to Him in their need (Psalm 142:6). Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Jul 2014 00:00

    • Five ethnic Hmong Christian families in Vietnam have been attacked by their neighbours in attempts to get them to renounce their faith. On 26 February, Hang A Khua and his family were ordered to recant by public security officers, backed by around 30 villagers from Trun Phu in Dien Bien province; when they refused, the officers ordered the villagers to attack them. The mob ransacked and demolished the family’s house; their rice fields were confiscated, and they were expelled from the district. In Son La province, four more Christian families were similarly threatened in March. One couple were attacked in their home; they were kicked and punched, and the wife was dragged out of the house by her hair. Give thanks for these families’ courageous stand for Christ and pray that they will find strength in Him. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Jul 2014 00:00

    • Pray for around 400 Christian families in the Con Dau area of Da Nang province in Vietnam whose homes have been demolished. The Christians were driven from their homes in a raid by police, security agents and the army at 7am on 27 March. The authorities have seized the land to build a luxury tourist resort; they decided in 2010 to destroy all the houses and the local cemetery used by the displaced Christians, who have been offered no adequate compensation or any help for resettlement. Pray that God will meet all their needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19). Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Fri, Jul 2014 00:00

    © Barnabas Fund 1997 - 2014 All rights reserved.
    Barnabas Fund & Barnabas Aid are registered trade marks