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Global Church Crime News 07/07/2023

global church crime Jul 08, 2023

(July 7) China House Church Labeled ‘Criminal Clique,’ Tithes Deemed ‘Illegal Income’ | CHINA

Three leaders of a house church in northern China have been charged with forming a “criminal clique” and obtaining “illegal income,” the church said, describing the charges as a first in China’s war on religion.

China charged Linfen Covenant House Church leaders Han Xiaodong, Li Jie and Wang Qiang months after their September and December 2022 arrests, the church reported June 29, and following months of harassment against church members.

“The family members and brothers and sisters of the three brothers were not only very surprised when they heard about it, but also disagreed with the content of the lawsuit. Citizens’ religious beliefs, which are protected by the Constitution, have become religious deception and deception in the Yaodu District Procuratorate of Linfen City, and the church that believes in God has been slandered as a ‘criminal group,’” reads an English translation of the post on the church’s website.

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(July 4) Israeli Military Damages Jenin Church, Latin Patriarchate Of Jerusalem Denounces ‘Unjustifiable Crime’ | JERUSALEM

The Latin Parish in Jenin suffered damage from an ongoing Israeli military operation in the Palestinian city, the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem said on Tuesday, the Anadolu news agency reported.

“Jenin city is facing an unprecedented Israeli aggression that targets people and land,” Patriarch Pierbattista Pizzaballa was quoted as saying in a statement.

“The Latin Parish in the city has suffered damage from this aggression,” he added.

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(July 2) Gunmen Attack Redeemed Church, Kill Pastor, Kidnap Seven Worshippers | NIGERIA

Gunmen stormed a Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) parish in Abule-Ori, Obafemi Owode Local Government Area of Ogun, killing the pastor and abducting seven members of the church.

The Commander of Ogun State So-Safe Corps, Soji Ganzallo, confirmed the incident to journalists in Abeokuta on Sunday.

Mr Ganzallo explained that officials of the corps, however, rescued the seven church members and killed one of the kidnappers during a rescue operation.

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(July 2) RCMP Investigate Canada Day Fire At Northern Alberta Church | CANADA

Lac La Biche RCMP and local fire official are investigating a blaze that gutted a Lac La Biche Church on Canada Day.

The first 911 call about the blaze at the St. Andrews Anglican Church on Churchill drive came in at 6:30 am on July 1. When Lac La Biche County Fire Rescue Services crews arrived at the scene a short time later, smoke and flames were venting from the front and sides of the structure.

Fire crews worked for three hours, keeping flames from spreading to the neighbouring buildings; including the Lac La Biche Legion, the church's parsonage and other residential homes. Fire crews managed to keep the flames contained to the inside of the church, keeping the building's exterior walls in place.

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(July 2) Russian Forces Attack Nikopol Once Again, Damaging A Church, An Administrative Building And Private Houses | RUSSIA

On Saturday, 1 July, Russian forces once again attacked the city of Nikopol in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, damaging a canteen, a church, an administrative building, and several private houses.

No one was injured or killed, but the city sustained damage.

A canteen, an administrative building and a church were damaged, as were eight private houses, two outbuildings and several cars.

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