Saturday, September 11, 2010
Savitri Era in China
[Contaminating Confucius: Christianity in China - Sandhya Jain - 09 Sep 2010.
The Guardian article observes that while most of the ‘house churches’ (underground churches) lack a known political agenda, there are some ‘revolutionary cults’ in rural areas. Antonio Weiss issues a veiled warning that “any violent suppression of Christian groups risks provoking the ire of the west, in particular the
.” He adds that the party leadership seems to have been impressed by the suggestion by famous Chinese economist Zhao Xiao that market economies benefit from active religious groups. Naturally Weiss does not tell us that Xiao is a Christian convert; nor are we able to learn how he was converted away from his natal tradition. US
What we can see with trepidation, however, is that
has come a long way from 1958 when most churches were shut down. Indeed, at the beginning of the Cultural Revolution in 1966, Chairman Mao’s wife, Chiang Ching, closed the foreigners church in China , and the regime expelled all foreign missionaries. The underground ‘house church’ movement took root in the decade that followed, and the government restored the native Chinese church in 1979 to check this trend. Then, in 2007, President Hu Jintao announced a policy of harnessing religious (i.e., Christian) people to build a prosperous society – which the West has interpreted as the beginning of an open door to a Christian voluntary sector. This has triggered visions of Shanghai as the “future of Christianity.” The author is Editor, www.vijayvaani.com] China