Century-old Church in Guizhou Serves the Miao People
By Yetta Yao, September 01, 2016 23:09 PM
Inside a mountain, in a village of the Miao people, a church with white walls and red pillars, the "Gospel Church", stands for over a century in Bijie, Guizhou.
Statistics in 2013 shows that Yeji Village, which lies at the foot of a mountain and beside a river, has more than 100 households or over 300 residents and it is a famous Miao village in the northwestern part of Guizhou. The majority of the Miao inhabitants here believe in God. Five years ago,the village was honored as "The Choir Village of Miao".
During the past century, the church had gone through from muddle to construction to steadiness in which it currently has walked into. It was rated as an excellent and harmonious church by the provincial bureau of religious affairs in 2013.
In history, the Miao people in the village experienced wars and migrations, suffering from all kinds of persecutions and exploitation. The backward developed economics and culture resulted to the fact that they didn't have the characters for their own language or couldn't understand Chinese.
In the late Qing Dynasty, J.R.Adam, a British missionary from the China Inland Mission, ran a school in Anshun where a villager heard the Gospel of "peace and love". From 1911 to 1915, the church sent several local believers to study in Anshun and they returned to lead the Miao believers to study the Bible with Adam becoming the founder of culture of the Miao village. In 1914, Adam directed the program to build the church and it was completed the following spring spring.
When the church was developing, the "Cultural Revolution" broke out: the bibles and hymnals were burned and the church was forced to be closed. Elder Tao moved to Anshun because he was unable to stand the cruel denunciation. He didn't come back until the spring of 1976.
After the policy of religious freedom came to effect, the church prospered under the leadership of Elder Tao. In 1982, about 2500 believers attended the first Easter meeting since the reopening.
In October 2006, it held an open praise and worship concert where a choir of over 300 members sang hymns in the special way of the Miao church in the village. Later, it celebrated its 100th anniversary thanksgiving service of founding on October 5 to 6, 2013.
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