China Chiristian Daily

- December 13, 2017 -


Church Leader Killed by Believer Suffering from Intermittent Psychosis

By Grace Zhi
on December 07, 2017 08:12 AM

The memorial service for Preacher Yang Xiunian was held in late November. : The picture of Yang was placed on the desk.

A church leader, 55, was killed by an intermittently psychotic believer early on the morning of November 19 when he was on duty in the church dormitory. 

Before Preacher Yang Xiunian had even gotten dressed, Jiang Nianshu, who joined Dawn Church two years ago, kicked the church door down and entered the dormitory. Jiang hit Yang in the eye sockets and temple before choking the preacher to death.

After the incident, Jiang surrendered himself to police and told them that the murder was related to a conflict caused by a debt. The police is verifying his mental state.

Sister Xuan, one of the church staff, told CCD that Jiang first gave the church the impression that he was loving and earnest for church ministries. Moreover, he was a master of electronics; he could operate a stereo system and repair electrical items. However, the church located in Huainan, Anhui, learned later that he was suffering from intermittent psychosis and because of this his previous church drove him out. But Dawn Church still accepted him.

After becoming a member of the church, Jiang and his family lived in a rented apartment near the church. He often attended the daily afternoon prayer meeting for the elderly and "knew the church very well".

"The mental disease usually attacked him when the weather turned cold. Then he ran around the church naked while talking rubbish and claiming to be a prophet." Xuan said.

Several church workers revealed that Jiang told Yang that he wanted to lend 15,000 yuan to the church when the church built its annex last year. The church gave him a loan receipt. Xuan said Jiang never asked the church to pay the money back.

Shocked by Yang's death, some believers held that the devil used Jiang to murder the preacher. Shortly before the tragedy, Jiang was hospitalized for 22 days due to the flare-up of the disease. "His disease was not cured. He needs hospitalization a couple of times every year." In addition, he announced that he and his whole family were prophets and prophetesses.

"We didn't take precautions against him. The worst thing he did when the illness recurred was blathering. Most of the time he was normal. The church accepted him out of love, but Brother Yang reminded the staff to keep an eye on him and to avoid staying with him alone for fear of any trouble. No one suspected that he would commit murder." Xuan added.

"Since the murder, everyone is weak. We don't get it --- why this happened since Brother Yang loved the Lord so much," said Sister Mao who gives powerpoint presentations during church services.

In her eyes, Brother Wang was an attractive leader of ideas and emphasized evangelism.

Founded in 2009, the church had only two small rooms in its early days. The church members have increased from 30 to 300. In 2011, its multi-functional annex was completed in ten months. The church has two campuses and seven gatherings, dreaming to have 3,000 members.

Last September, Wang enrolled in a one-year pastoral training program held by Anhui Theological Seminary. He returned to handle church affairs on Friday afternoons, attended another church's training on Saturday during the day, and prepared for sermons on Saturday nights.

"He let young workers preach sermons, saying that we should give opportunities to young people." Recalled Preacher Zhang.

"If possible, I wish that I could trade my life for his. The church really needs him." Said a sister in tears.

The congregation remembered that Yang often took the initiative to talk with and comfort believers with a tender smile on his face whenever they didn't look like themselves.

"We lost a good worker. Pray that the Lord comfort everyone, especially the family of Brother Yang. Although we don't understand why, we believe that He must have His good will." A local pastor said in his memorial service hosted in late November.  

- Translated by Karen Luo

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