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 March 01, 2012 8:57 AM

Update on Nguyen Van Ly

On Feb. 19, 2007, Father Nguyen Van Ly was arrested in Hue, Vietnam for distributing material "harmful to the state." In March, he was sentenced to eight years in prison.

On March 15, 2010, Father Nguyen was released on medical parole after he suffered three debilitating strokes. He spent 16 months convalescing before the government demanded he return to complete his sentence.

Seriously ill and weak, Father Nguyen was rearrested on July 25, 2011. He remains in prison.

More Info...

Nguyen Van Ly
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 January 13, 2011 4:21 AM

On Jan. 4, while quietly sharing an evening meal, a truckload of district police officers with guns cocked and ready to shoot burst into Pastor Wanna’s house shouting, “Stop! Nobody move!” They then forcibly detained 11 Christians and charged them with conducting a “secret meeting” without approval.
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 December 23, 2010 3:42 AM

Vietnam Authorities Move to Stop Protestant Christmas Events
Hundreds of Christians were denied celebrating Christmas this week at the National Convention Center in Hanoi. As police blocked the entrance, Christians began singing and praying in the square in front of the center. Police then moved in, striking some Christians with fists and night sticks in the melee that followed.
Read More

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 January 28, 2010 3:52 AM

Forced Recantations of Faith Continue in Vietnam:  A Vietnamese man, violently forced to recant his fledgling Christian faith, faces pressure from authorities and clansmen to prove his return to traditional Hmong belief by sacrificing to ancestors next month. Read more >>
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 January 01, 2010 10:16 PM

Record Numbers of Vietnamese Attend Christmas Rallies

God has heard your prayers on behalf of Christians in Vietnam.  For the past two years, authorities have granted permission to unregistered house churches in Ho Chi Minh City for Christmas rallies. Compass Direct News reports that last year more than 10,000 people participated in Tao Dan Stadium.  On December 11th of this year, a record breaking 40,000 people met in Ho Chi Minh City to worship God in the Christmas season with upwards of 8,000 people committing their lives to Christ in response to the gospel message.  And then 12,000 people attended a December 20 Christmas rally in Hanoi. While permission was never officially granted for this rally, authorities in Hanoi indicated they would not interfere with the event.

Father, as 2009 comes to a close, we give thanks for this clear evidence of your power at work in Vietnam.  We pray that the hearts of the leaders would soften toward Your people and that a mighty revival would wash over this country.

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 December 17, 2009 7:01 AM

Dear Donna

“One Hundred Days of Combat” in North Korea

September 17 marked the end of “150 days of combat” in North Korea during which the movement of citizens was closely monitored.  Permits were required to go from one place to another.  Everyone was required to work for the state and if they were found on the streets without a permit they were sent to labor camps.  Additionally, church leaders report that many are starving to death from the famine.  Even some parents have left their children as orphans to wander the streets because the pain of helplessly watching them slowly starve to death was too much to bear.

The work of Open Doors was restricted during those 150 days, but on September 17 the workers were ready to begin again distributing Bibles, Christian literature, food, medications and emergency goods.  Then a mere five days later the disheartening news broke that another “100 days of combat” was declared.  After much prayer, the Christian leaders have determined to continue this vital work during the restrictions and have asked that we cover them in prayer.

Father, our hearts weep over our brothers and sisters in North Korea who suffer so much hardship simply because they were born in a place ruled by a tyrannical leader.  Comfort them in their suffering; have mercy on them; meet their basic needs of food and shelter; protect them.  Thank you for the bold compassion of those who share even their meager rations with others who have less. And in the midst of this profound darkness may Your light  shine and cause Your church there to grow.

Letters from America
Consider sending an e-letter to “Free North Korea Radio” and let the North Koreans know we are praying for them.  Your greeting will be read on the radio in North Korea!   Include your first name, what state you live in, and a brief message.  We ask that you avoid making the message overly complicated as it will be difficult to properly translate.  Send your e-letters to and put "Letters from America" in the subject of the email – you can write as often as you wish!

Praying with you,

The Prayer Force Team

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 October 29, 2009 7:26 PM

Encouragement from Vietnam

Compass News reports that on October 19, the Assemblies of God (AoG) church in Vietnam received an “operating license,” the first step in becoming legal.  They now have permission to “carry on religious activity” anywhere in the country for the next year.  In the meantime, they must submit some extensive documentation, including a doctrinal statement, a constitution and by-laws, and a four-year working that must be approved by the government before being allowed to officially organize.  This is the first of these operating licenses to be granted in two years.    

Father, we give thanks for this encouraging news from Vietnam.  We call for your Spirit’s intervention this year as the AoG prepares and submits the required documentation.  Give them favor with the authorities that Your Word would go forth in great power and the people of Vietnam might stand united in praise and worship.

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 July 14, 2009 3:16 PM

Vietnam - A hmong man who murdered his mother for converting to Christianity, has recently assaulted another Christian, critically wounding the man..   [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 June 21, 2009 11:28 AM

Charisma News

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Police in Vietnam Attack House Church, Jail Leaders
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VietnamHANOI, Vietnam- Police invaded the Sunday service of the Agape Baptist congregation in Vietnam's Hung Yen Province on June 7 and beat worshippers, including women, and arrested a pastor and an elder.

Christian sources said police put the two church leaders into separate cells, and each man was beaten by a gang of five policemen. Pastor Duong Van Tuan of the house church in Hamlet 3, Ong Dinh Commune, Khoai Chau district said that officers beat them in a way that did not leave marks: hard blows to the stomach.

The beatings came in retaliation for Tuan refusing to leave the area as police had ordered, Christian sources said. He and the church elder were released later that evening.

The congregation in Hung Yen, a small but populous province that straddles the Red River 50 kilometers (31 miles) south of Hanoi, has endured harassment and attacks by police and other officials since April. Police officers disrupted worship services on April 19, bloodying Tuan's mouth with punches, and also on May 24 and 31.

In the May 31 incident, he was attacked as he preached. The deputy commune police chief, identified only by his surname of Them, grabbed him by the neck while another officer tore the Bible from his hand, Christian sources said. His arms were twisted behind his back and "he was marched off like a criminal gang member," one said.

Authorities took Tuan to the office of the commune people's committee, clubbing him several times en route. Immediately after arriving at the office, police tried to force him to sign a document saying he had resisted their investigation, though he had yet to be questioned, and said that he was under administrative arrest. Christian sources said he was also ordered to sign a document accepting the seizure of his Bible, which they had taken from him two hours prior.

Officers ended by issuing him an order "to leave the commune immediately by the most direct route."

A woman from his congregation who was unable to obtain cooperation from authorities at lower levels, Le thi Nhung, prepared and sent a detailed, three-page petition to local, provincial and national authorities on June 1, a week before officers last stormed their worship service.

In the petition, Nhung explained that one of the first things Tuan did on his arrival in March was to explain to church elders how to register their congregation's activities according to the Prime Minister's Special Directive on Protestantism of 2005. This directive permits and urges local authorities to register house churches to carry on religious activities. Tuan also went to the local Fatherland Front chair, a woman identified only as Hao, explained the church's aspirations and asked her to help them meet requirements.

The church elders submitted an application to register locally, in accordance with the directive. Authorities, however, did not respond within the 30-day period prescribed by the directive. On the 31st day, they sent a document denying registration.

Bogus Denial

Officials gave two reasons for denying registration, Christian sources said: that the congregation needed permission from higher authorities, including the central Bureau of Religious Affairs; and that in any event the Prime Minister's directive applied only to churches on mountains and not to churches on plains.

Both reasons, local Christians said, are contrary to the directive.

The church's petition to the government clearly spelled out two articles of the constitution (71 and 73) and four articles of

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anonymous  November 26, 2008 1:19 PM

Vietnamese Authorities Pressure New Christians to Recant*

According to church leaders in Lao Cai province, authorities in Vietnam’s far north are pressuring new Christians among the Hmong minority to recant their faith and to re-establish ancestral altars, which is in violation of Vietnam’s new religion policy. According to Compass Direct News, when the authorities in the Bac Ha district discovered that villagers had converted to Christianity and discarded their altars, they sent “work teams” to the area to apply pressure. Earlier this month, several high officials were sent to try to convince the converts that the government considered becoming a Christian a very serious offense. Christian leaders in the area told Compass Direct News that there were threats of being cut off from any government services. They also said that when this failed to deter the new Christians, the officials threatened to drive the Christians from their homes and fields, harm them physically and put them in prison. Read more about the government supported persecution in Vietnam

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anonymous OPEN DOORS -A REQUEST FOR PRAYER! May 21, 2008 7:46 AM

Vietnam Officials Confiscate Home of Evangelist*

Local officials in Lao Cai province have confiscated the land and home of a former opium addict because of his phenomenal success as an evangelist, Christian sources reported. Sua Yinh Siong was desperately addicted to opium. In 2004, Siong became a Christian and broke free from his addictions to opium and his animistic beliefs, taking down paraphernalia for ancestor worship and other spirit-related articles and burning them. His joy over his liberation soon spread to others, and eventually more than 200 families decided to follow Christ! In April, local and provincial officials had confiscated his land, citing him for “illegal religious activities.” Read more… 

Please Pray:

  • Praise God for the 200 families that came to Christ by the life changing witness of Siong! (Acts 14:21)
  • For Siong to have his land returned to him by the Vietnamese government. (Genesis 13:17)
  • That the government officials’ hearts will be softened, and that they may also be open to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (Romans 10:10)
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anonymous  March 28, 2008 2:42 AM

September 13, 2007 12:39 PM

Y Wo NieShuang ShuyingVan Thong


Arrested: August 2004
Print Fact Sheet
Y Wo Nie was arrested August 18, 2004, for leading a demonstration
demanding more religious freedom and the release of property
confiscated by the Vietnamese government. He received a nine-year
sentence. His family has not been able to visit him.
Write a
letter of encouragement. Let Pastor Nie know you are praying for him
and the believers in Vietnam. Let your friends know about persecution
in Vietnam; encourage them to pray and write. Also, write Vietnamese
officials requesting Nie’s release. Your letters make a difference.
Get involved! Pray for and write to Nie today.
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 December 10, 2007 10:56 PM

anti-state theologies from developing.

Bob Roberts, senior pastor of NorthWood Church near Dallas, Texas,
which has participated in numerous humanitarian missions to Vietnam for
over a decade, told Triet that efforts to change perceptions of Vietnam
in his congregation were complicated by “what has happened to Father

The delegation also included overseas Vietnamese Pastor Phuc Dang, and
Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention. The latter
hopes to go to Vietnam in January to witness the long-promised legal
recognition of the dozen or so small congregations related to the SBC,
which have been considered illegal since 1975.

Church leaders of both unregistered and legally recognized groups in
Vietnam, contacted on the eve of their president’s visit to Washington,
unanimously called on their government to resume and accelerate the
registration of congregations and move toward “regularizing” religion.

This process slowed considerably after Vietnam fulfilled its wish list
from the United States – removal from the U.S. religious liberty
blacklist, a state visit by President Bush, and U.S. support for
membership in the World Trade Organization. Hundreds of applications by
local congregations for registration, all carefully following
government protocol, have gone unanswered in spite of legislative
promises to reply within a set time.

The situation remains particularly hard for ethnic minority churches
along the borders of Laos and China in Vietnam’s northwest provinces.
In these remote places, lack of registration is still used as an excuse
to break up or to prevent regular worship services.

The Evangelical Church of Vietnam (North) has submitted requests for
well over 600 churches, and the Northwest Highlands reports only 31
church registrations. Only 13 of the 31 church registrations came after
Vietnam’s status as a Country of Particular Concern was lifted last

The U.S. Office of International Religious Freedom is pressing for further registrations in the Northwest Highlands.

Disappearance of Church Leader

Some mystery surrounded the whereabouts of the president of the ECVN
(N), the Rev. Phung Quang Huyen, during Triet’s U.S. visit.

One of his colleagues in Hanoi reported to friends in the United States
that Rev. Huyen had been secretly invited to accompany the country’s
president on his U.S. visit as the only religious representative. His
name was even confirmed in Washington as being on the official
delegation list.

He was not present at the meeting with evangelical pastors in
Washington on June 21, and another church leader in Hanoi informed
Compass that people were confused when Rev. Huyen had gone to China
with Vietnam’s Bureau of Religious Affairs at the same time the
presidential delegation left for the United States.

Rev. Huyen has extensive knowledge of the continuing difficulties faced
by ethnic minority Christians in Vietnam’s northwest provinces.  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 December 10, 2007 10:49 PM

Vietnam: Ethnic Christian Dies from Torture Injuries Added: Jun 27th, 2007 5:11 AM

Cause of death confirmed as Vietnamese president faces human rights criticisms in U.S.

HO CHI MINH CITY, June 26 (Compass Direct News) -- A young Hroi ethnic minority man who refused to recant his Christian faith died from injuries received while under official interrogation, Compass confirmed as Vietnamese President Nguyen Minh Triet met with U.S. officials. Triet met with President Bush in Washington, D.C. on Friday (June 22) amid some protests over Vietnam’s human rights violations.

In his early 20s, Vin Y Het died on April 20, leaving a pregnant wife and two small children.

From Son Hoa district in the costal province of Phu Yen in south-central Vietnam, Het died from internal injuries suffered when officials beat him several months earlier for refusing to deny his Christian faith, Compass has confirmed.

Het, of Krong Ba Commune, became a Christian in September 2006. Not long after that, local government officials summoned him to their offices and pressured him to sign a document denying his faith. When he refused, they had him savagely beaten.

The young Hroi man suffered internal injuries that caused severe swelling in various parts of his body. Officials released him with threats of further abuse or worse unless he recanted.

Het reported what had happened to him to the Rev. Dinh Thong, long-time pastor of the Tuy Hoa City church in Phu Yen Province, and chief provincial representative of the legally-recognized Evangelical Church of Vietnam (South), or ECVN (S). Rev. Thong wrote a letter to provincial authorities describing the abuse and asking for an investigation.

The province sent a team to the commune to investigate. The brief “investigation” yielded a paper signed by Het saying that he had not been beaten. The investigators also accused Rev. Thong of making a false report.

Vietnamese authorities previously have investigated such deaths following expressions of strong foreign concern. But church sources in Vietnam said that these investigations thus far have produced only cover-ups; no perpetrators have ever been prosecuted.

For many years, church leaders have told authorities that government sincerity about better policies for religious believers could be easily demonstrated by prosecuting officials who persecute Christians for religious reasons. In the case of Het, even the report of a reputable pastor within the legally-recognized ECVN (S) went unheeded.

Facing the Heat

A recent crackdown on human rights activists in Vietnam threatened to scuttle Triet’s visit, but it went ahead on a somewhat downgraded basis.

Before Triet’s historic meeting with Bush, he met with evangelical leaders at the Vietnamese Embassy in Washington, D.C. on Thursday (June 21). The unprecedented meeting followed Triet’s testy meeting with U.S. congressional leaders earlier in the day.

In Vietnam, state media such as Thanh Nien Daily highlighted the business dimension of Triet’s visit with headlines trumpeting the $11 billion in commercial deals he secured, but the Vietnamese president did not escape human rights and religious freedom criticisms while in Washington.

The Vietnam president met with carping from Rep. Loretta Sanchez, D-Calif., and Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., both with large ethnic Vietnamese populations in their constituencies. They pressed him hard on the crackdown on peaceful rights advocates, which has seen religious leaders such a Father Nguyen Van Ly and Christian lawyers Nguyen Van Dai and Le Thi Cong Nhan sentenced to prison for calling for more religious freedom and democratic reform.

In advance of the visit, President Bush hosted four prominent overseas Vietnamese spokespersons for human rights to show disapproval of the crackdown.

Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., held a bipartisan press conference in connection with the Vietnam president’s visit. One speaker was Mike Benge, an aid worker in Vietnam during the Vietnam War who has been a leading advocate for Vietnam’s minorities in the Central Highlands.

Benge appealed for justice for several hundred chiefly Christian Montagnards who remain in prison for demonstrating for religious freedom and against confiscation of their ancestral lands in 2001 and 2004, or for fleeing to Cambodia in the aftermath.

Under pressure on the human rights front, Vietnam did release three dissidents in advance of Triet’s U.S. trip. According to a report by the Vietnam Study Group, some 38 dissidents have been arrested since August 2006, and since March 30, 2007, 20 of them have received sentences totalling 80 years.

Asked about the crackdown during meetings, however, the president could do no better than repeat the communist mantra that all the dissidents were simply lawbreakers – without any discussion of whether Vietnam’s laws violate international human rights standards.

Evangelical Concerns

Regarding Triet’s meeting with evangelicals, the Institute for Global Engagement (IGE) released a statement yesterday (June 25) calling it “unprecedented in Vietnam’s diplomatic history, allowing evangelicals a rare opportunity to speak openly with the President about issues of religious freedom.”

IGE President Chris Seiple, who has been constructively engaging Vietnam officials on religious freedom issues for more than five years, raised three issues: the need to accelerate church registrations; the need to train local government officials in Vietnam’s new religion policy; and the need to expand theological training as a means to preven  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 December 10, 2007 10:44 PM

 where he is going. “Some get the news two or three years later he is still alive and in prison.”

Once the husband is arrested, “the wife cannot earn enough to feed the family,” said Lee. “Many of them go to bed hungry.”

But VFC helps Christian families to get back in touch with pastors in prison. Some of these pastors are 1,300 km from their families, so VFC helps wives to visit their husbands in prison. Unfortunately, wives are only allowed to visit for an hour, with a policeman accompanying them.

“In that one hour, they cry to each other more than they can talk,” explains Lee. VFC also helps families of pastors financially, while the pastors are in prison.

VFC is an indigenous Vietnamese ministry that is assisted by Christian Aid Mission.


Photo: Many Christian families are forced to leave their homes and villages and live in simple structures in the jungle, simply because of their faith.

June 22, 2007


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Persecuted Church in Vietnam Highlighted at Conference

RIDGEWAY, Ontario (Christian Aid News Service)—At the Gateway Vietnam Conference, presented by Christian Aid Mission June 15 and 16 in Ridgeway, Ontario, hearts were touched by stories of persecuted Christians in Vietnam and how they are persevering in their faith.

All those in attendance were inspired by Rev. Daniel Lee, leader of Vietnam For Christ, the keynote speaker at the conference. He shared his personal testimony, and told how VFC is helping persecuted Christians in many ways.

Lee started VFC in 1995, after returning from a visit to the Hmong people in Vietnam’s north. Seeing some poor people who needed healthcare but couldn’t afford it, Lee gave a local pastor some money to help them out. But later on, that pastor told Lee he had used the donation to photocopy 150 Bibles and 250 copies of a hymn book. He said people’s spiritual health was more important than their physical health. “Since then, God put a burden on my heart,” explained Lee.

Now, Lee works in Vietnam regularly with ministry leaders who reach out to Vietnam’s minority tribal groups. All of VFC’s work is done underground, because Vietnam is ranked as one of the worst countries in the world for persecuting Christians.

Currently, VFC works with 25 tribes in Vietnam. Of 11 million tribal people, 1.2 million have become Christians. That compares with only 600,000 Christians out of 70 million ethnic Vietnamese.

Working in Secret

Tribal Christians are watched closely by the police, so VFC must be careful as it helps them. Lee has been stopped three times by Vietnamese police, and once had to run through the jungle for more than 10 hours to escape.

Training is an important part of VFC’s work. VFC has trained 7,000 pastors since 1995. Tribal pastoral students have to leave home early each morning, go to a rice field as if they will be working there, secretly travel to cities for training, and then return home every evening, carrying farming tools. Police sometimes check people’s homes in the middle of the night to make sure they are at home, which is why these students need to return every evening.

When students are trained, they usually sit on the floor of a room with no chairs. That way, if they have to suddenly leave because of approaching police, they will leave no clue as to how many students there were: chairs can be counted.

VFC also prints Bibles secretly for tribal Christians, in several languages. “It’s very dangerous,” explained Lee. In northern Vietnam, VFC is not able to print Bibles at all, so the ministry photocopies them. To print one Bible in Vietnam costs only about $3.75.

Right now, 400 pastors are in prison in Vietnam, simply because of their faith. “Usually the police come to their homes at one or two o’clock in the morning,” reported Lee. They take the pastor away, and don’t tell his wife and family w  [ send green star]  [ accepted]

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