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Aid to the Church in Need's mission to assist oppressed Christians in China

This is Alessandro Monteduro, director of Aid to the Church in Need. As an organization that seeks to protect oppressed Christians, he denounced the current situation Chinese Christians are confronted with.  As this report shows, of Chinaâ??s population of 1.3 billion, only five percent are Christians. In turn, this leads them to pray in dilapidated churches such as this, or even underground.  Though now outnumbering members of China's communist regime, Christians still find themselves discriminated against. Monteduro relayed the words of Chinese cardinal Joseph Zen. ALESSANDRO MONTEDURO Director, Aid to the Church in Need  "He said it is not possible to imagine an autonomous Church, but only one subordinated to the Chinese government. All of us, also the Catholic Church in China, and the underground and clandestine Church, thought that with the new government, with the new leader of the regime, of the Chinese government, Xi Jinping, he would change something. Unfortunately, we did not see these changes.â?  Cardinal Joseph Zen of Hong Kong also released a statement regarding the situation on the World Day of Prayer for the Church in China.  CARD. JOSEPH ZEN Bishop Emeritus of Hong Kong (China) "We hope that one day even the Chinese government will understand this. So that they may be sure we are truly good citizens, precisely because we are Christians, because Jesus taught us to love our country and to love everybody as our brothers and sisters.â? However, despite these sad images, there are surprising statistics that show signs of hope for the future.   ALESSANDRO MONTEDURO Director, Aid to the Church in Need "Christians in China increase even if the regime does not admit it, and today, it is estimated that there can even be 65 million suffering persecution and oppression, but quarantined in faith.â? While there is no doubt that a large and challenging task lies ahead, Aid to the Church in Need is serving as a voice to those without one in China.  JC MG/ACS S -PR Up: JC