Christian music school teachers await trial


Pastor Xu Feng is still in prison. He is accused of teaching religion to minors, although he claims to have only taught music.

by Pan Shan

The Procuratorate office in Harbin. Credits.

In Harbin, the capital of northern Heilongjiang Provincea Christian music school was raided last September in the early hours of the morning by the police, and its director arrested.

Maitzu Shengle High School (麦子圣乐高中) is a Christian school for talented young musicians, specializing in choral singing and piano lessons, headed by Pastor Xu Feng.

Chinese law prohibits teaching religion to minors. However, the school does not teach religion. It only teaches music, although some of its graduates are sent there by their churches to be trained to sing in church choirs.

In recent years, following the indications of President Xi Jinping himself, the provisions prohibiting the involvement of minors in religious-related activities have been interpreted more strictly. Pastor Xu Feng’s home was raided twice by the police and his phone was put under surveillance. Students and their families have also been interrogated and harassed by the police.

In the first days of September 2021, the landlord who rents Pastor Xu the premises where the school operates informs him that the police are planning a raid.

On September 4, 2021, at 7 a.m., some 35 police officers and bureaucrats from the Religious Affairs and Public Education Administrations raided the school, arrested all teachers and students, and confiscated pianos, computers, and other equipment.

The students and other teachers have since been released, but Pastor Xu Feng has been officially arrested for teaching religion to minors. He remains in prison awaiting trial.

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