For background on Orthodox Christianity in China, see here.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Christians in China, see here.

Chinese Street Evangelist Detained For ‘Organizing Illegal Gatherings,’

China Aid, September 18, 2023:

(Hengyang, Hunan province) Today, police detained street evangelist Chen Wensheng on suspicion of “organizing and financing illegal gatherings.” They placed him in the Hengdong County Detention Center in Hengyang City.


Chen Wensheng’s wife, Mo Xiaoju, received a notice of criminal detention on the same day. The notification states “In accordance with the provisions of article 82 of the Criminal Procedure Law of the People’s Republic of China, the Bureau placed Chen Wensheng, who is suspected of organizing and financing the crime of unlawful assembly, under criminal detention at 1800 hours on 18 September 2023.”


Chen Wensheng was sent back to Hengyang, Hunan Province, after being intercepted by the authorities at the Shanghai airport on August 29. He wanted to fly from Shanghai to Jeju Island, South Korea. Heads of the local public security, National Treasury, and the United Front Work Department called Chen Wensheng one after another. Authorities claimed that the leaders of relevant departments wanted to meet with him. They bought him an air ticket on August 30 for a flight from Shanghai to Beijing, and then from Beijing to Changsha.


After returning to Hengyang on August 31, Chen Wensheng immediately went out to Leiyang to preach the gospel. He posted on his WeChat, celebrating that he got to pray over 250 people in the previous month. “Plus,” he added, “a total of 1,817 people I led in evangelism from January to July to pray to the Lord Jesus. I thank God that I have led a total of 2067 people to pray to the Lord Jesus this year.” Chen offered to give out some of his gospel tracts to other Christians who needed to evangelize to their families.

Police gave Chen Wensheng 15 days of administrative detention. At the end of the 15 days, he was placed in criminal detention.


Chen became a regular visitor at the local police station and detention center because of his persistent evangelism for many years. On several occasions, officials detained him and threatened his family. Even behind bars, he never forgets to preach the gospel to his neighbors and guards.