It’s no secret that as the Chinese economy enters a slowdown, the Chinese government has been taking an ever-more authoritarian approach towards virtually every aspect of life in the People’s Republic. In this regard, few areas have received more attention than religion. This ranges from the imprisonment of anywhere between 800,000 and 2 million Uighur Muslims (something explored at length by leading Islam and liberty scholar Mustafa Akyol) to the burning and demolition of Protestant and Catholic churches.
Things are, however, about to get much worse. For some time, there have been numerous reports of the Chinese regime being determined to purge Christian theology and practice of what it calls “Western” content and emphases in order to “sinicize” Christianity.
By “sinicization” is meant two things. The first is a question of raw politics: to ensure any religious organization is completely under the Communist regime’s control. The second is to make Christianity conform to Chinese culture. And Chinese culture, it appears, is whatever the Chinese government says it is at any given time.