#884 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 4 May 2014.
While China is officially an atheist state, thousands of Christian congregations have sprung up in the four decades since the death of Chairman Mao Zedong heralded the end of the Cultural Revolution.
Estimates suggest that China will have more Christians than the USA in 15 years, making China not only the world’s biggest national economy but also its most numerous Christian nation.
China’s biggest church, the 5,000-seat Liushi church, opened in 2013, boasting more than twice as many seats as Westminster Abbey and a 63-metre crucifix.
Protestant community numbered just one million members when the nation achieved independence in 1949. The Pew Research Centre’s Forum on Religion and Public Life claims that in 2010 there were more than 58 million Protestant Christians in China, compared to 40 million in Brazil and 36 million in South Africa.
China never ceases to amaze and awe on so many fronts. Its people and its leaders need our prayers more than ever.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.