Chinese pastor Hao Zhiwei is serving an eight year sentence for preaching the gospel and collecting offerings without government authorization.
The Egangqiao Church church pastor was arrested in July 2019 and accused of fraud for taking offering at her church in China’s Hubei province.
Zhiwei was sentenced on February 11, 2022 by the Ezhou Echeng District People’s Court. According to International Christian Concern, she plans to appeal the charge.
Her husband died in 2018, so Zhiwei’s arrest leaves her two sons with no parents in the home. Her oldest son, Paul, who is in college, wrote his mother a letter on the day of her sentencing.
Zhiwei’s reply is not only sobering but a reminder that even 2,000 years later, the church has brothers and sisters in jail for preaching the gospel and still praise God for His faithfulness.
Read the letter to her son below:
Peace to you.
This is the first time mom has received your letter, I am beyond happy.
Seeing you grow in good health; I am deeply grateful. God is faithful, He is watching over and pastoring you [and your brother].
Let’s pray together in one heart and mind for your brother [Moses], we will certainly see a miracle.
Missing your growth is painful to me as well. I hope that you would persist in diary-writing. Once we reunite, you can share it with me. I especially like to read your stories regarding your growth.
For these two years and seven months, I have also grown a lot! I had never played Sudoku before, but during my time here, I have become a master. There is nearly not one that I can’t do! I hope you can practice early so we can have a competition once we reunite.
Do not worry too much about me. My cell mate received her sentence on the 10th: 12 years. Today is the 18th, and she has not been able to sleep. Once I received my first indictment on the 11th, I only had trouble sleeping the first night. I was praying about it and was able to sleep well since then. God’s peace amazingly descended on me.
Wishing you an early happy 19th birthday!
Mom who loves you forever
February 18, 2022