In the province of Jiangxi, government officials are financially encouraging Christians to remove crosses from their homes and replace them with the effigy of President Xi Jinping.
According to propaganda from the Chinese government on social media, no less than 624 crosses have been removed from houses by their owners, who “publicly recognized their mistakes” and promised “not to entrust to Jesus but to the (Communist) Party”.
In this part of the country, where there are one million Christians, 10% of the population live below the poverty line. The government is thus able to convince poor people to remove religious images from their homes in exchange for certain social advantages; this is what is happening, a priest in the country told Ucanews.
Another priest in northern China declared that President Xi has become “another Mao” since his re-election, and fears that the country’s religious policy will soon grow stricter.
Recently, the Ministry of Education even launched a campaign to “raise awareness” among the youth, who are encouraged to denounce any member of their family that could be a threat to national security.