Saturday, October 9, 2010

North Korea executes underground church leaders

The Christian Post has reported (August 19) the execution of three leaders of the underground church by authorities in North Korea. Although the execution and imprisonment happened in mid-May, news only got out three months later, in August. Citing AsiaNews, the Christian Post reported that North Korean police raided a house in Kuwal-dong in Pyungsung county, Pyongan province, and arrested all 23 believers who were gathered there for religious activity.
The leaders were sentenced to death and soon after executed while the other 20 were reportedly sent to the infamous prison labour camp No 15 in Yodok. The 23 Christians had come to faith after some of them travelled to China on business and met with church members there.
Last year, as reported by the Associated Press, a 33-year-old Christian woman was publicly executed in that communist enclave, for the crime of distribution of Bibles.
Most Christians in the free world can hardly imagine what it means for brethren in restricted regions of the world to live a life where the major identity is not the job title or social status, but rather what one’s views are concerning the Lord Jesus Christ. Being a Christian in North Korea is considered one of the worst crimes by the oppressive government. There are an estimated 400,000 Christians in North Korea who live under the constant threat of imprisonment, torture or public execution if authorities discover their Christian faith. It is estimated that at least 10 percent of these our brethren (between 40,000 to 60,000), are currently in prison labor camps because of their faith.

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