Churches in Beijing Suspend Gatherings on Christmas

Beijing Gangwashi Church
Beijing Gangwashi Church
By Yi YangDecember 31st, 2020

On December 24 and 25 when all churches celebrated Christmas and commemorating the birth of the Savior Jesus Christ, many churches in Beijing suspended their on-site worship services due to the pandemic, and some churches switched to online worship.

Due to the recent COVID-19 cases in Beijing, Haidian Christian Church continues to take the measure of “double suspensions” from December 24 on, according to a notice posted on its website on that day. Measures to suspend the opening of the church to the public and collective gatherings are strictly implemented, and members will be notified of when services are resumed.

The notice said, “All brothers and sisters, please kindly understand and cooperate to continue the pandemic prevention and control work. Let us also continue to pray for an early end to the pandemic.”

On the same day, similar notices were also issued on the official website of Gangwashi Church, the official WeChat accounts of Kuanjie Church and Fengtai Church. “Due to the pandemic, Fengtai Church will stop holding the Christmas celebration on the evening of December 25. Please understand and support.”

Yanjing Theological Seminary has been closed to the public due to the pandemic situation and renovation of the chapel, urging believers to participate in the celebration of Christmas and Sunday services online.

After suspending the on-site gathering, Haidian Christian Church, Chongwenmen Christian Church, and Yanjing Theological Seminary all offered live online worship services during the Christmastime.

Due to COVID-19, all churches in Beijing have stopped on-site gatherings since the end of January. After a notice was issued indicating that the gathering could resume on 14 June, it was soon temporarily cancelled due to the pandemic in new places. In-person services did not resume until mid-August. Members needed to register to attend services. When believers enter the churches, the Health Kit, registration number and temperature will be checked, and disinfection and security check done. The distance between believers is strictly one meter at the time of worship.

On the afternoon of December 24, the government of Beijing held its 190th regular press conference on the prevention and control of the pandemic, announcing the latest situation. From midnight on December 23 to 4 o’clock in the afternoon of December 24, there were two new asymptomatic infected persons in Beijing, and no new confirmed or suspected local cases.

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