In 1997, Bob Fu and his wife Heidi fled their native China as religious refugees.
After being imprisoned by the Chinese government for “illegal evangelism,” Bob knew he and his wife would be safer in the United States.
But he also knew he needed to take the opportunity to help his fellow believers and others suffering under China’s strict laws.
That’s why he founded ChinaAid.
Fu became a Christian in 1989, and before long, he was the pastor of a house-church in Beijing. He led underground church services and Bible schools, bringing people to Christ in the very heart of Communist China.
In 1996, the Chinese government arrested and imprisoned Fu and his wife, Heidi, for conducting “illegal evangelism.” Government agents interrogated and abused the couple, trying to get them to give up the location of their house church, but Bob and Heidi stood strong, protecting their family in Christ.
When they were released two months later, the Fus knew they had to escape from China. After an arduous journey through Thailand to Hong Kong and the birth of their first child, Daniel, the couple found themselves on a plane to the United States.
They had escaped the shadow of Communist China, but so many others were still trapped.
In 2002, Bob founded ChinaAid, a human rights ministry organization dedicated to “[bringing] international attention to China’s gross human rights violations and…[promoting] religious freedom and rule of law in China.”
When the Chinese government arrested five house-church leaders and condemned them to death in 2002, ChinaAid went on a mission to “expose, encourage, and equip.”
The organization met with members of Congress to expose details of the trials, wrote letters to encourage the imprisoned pastors, and sent a team of trained human rights lawyers to defend the persecuted leaders.
Because of ChinaAid’s involvement, the five death sentences were eventually overturned!
Since then, the organization has sought to defend and advocate for religious freedom in China by exposing human rights violations, providing financial and spiritual support to the persecuted there, and training lawyers and citizens in human rights law.
The Chinese government routinely imprisons and tortures Chinese Christians (and other religious minorities) as well as Chinese human rights lawyers. ChinaAid reports on these abuses, exposing China’s persecution to the world in hopes of getting more countries involved in the fight for human rights.
When hundreds of Chinese human rights lawyers disappeared in 2015, ChinaAid was at the front of the movement to find and release them and hold the Chinese Communist Party accountable for its crimes.
This incident marked the “beginning of the deteriorating situation for the rule of law in China,” noted Fu. The Chinese government shows no respect for human rights, replacing rule of law with the tyranny of President Xi Jinping.
In addition to exposing incidents of persecution and abuse, ChinaAid seeks to tangibly encourage those abused by the Chinese government. The organization provides financial and spiritual support to those whose possessions and homes have been stripped away.
Chinese Christians, especially those in prison, often feel intensely alone, as Fu well knows, so ChinaAid conducts letter-writing campaigns to encourage these believers. In some cases, the letters have moved prison guards to improve the prisoners’ living conditions as well.
The organization’s third focus is to equip Chinese Christians with the legal knowledge to defend their rights under Chinese constitutional law and international law. Fu knows that a well-informed Chinese citizenry will promote freedom and protection for all minority groups in China, not just Christians.
Due to the Chinese government’s crackdown on human rights lawyers, those well-versed in the law are in short supply. So, Christians who have been trained in human rights law allows them to defend themselves and those around them from governmental abuses.
ChinaAid also publishes an annual persecution report to “reveal the truth about religious persecution in China.” This report details high-profile human rights cases, governmental destruction of churches and Christian meeting places, violent arrests, and more.
To learn more about the ministry of ChinaAid or donate to the work of defending human rights in China, visit the organization’s website.
And please prayerfully consider writing letters to those in prison or signing a petition to free one of the imprisoned believers.
Above all, pray for our brothers and sisters in China! May they stand strong in the faith and be a powerful witness to those around them.