‘Bible’ suffering same fate
“Robinson Crusoe,” “The Little Match Girl” and other classic children’s stories are being edited in China to exclude references to God and the Bible.
According to Barnabas Fund, a global Christian ministry that focuses on the persecuted church, it’s part of a move to eliminate references to the Christian faith nationwide.
“The popular stories are among four works by foreign writers to feature in a new Chinese school textbook for fifth grade pupils, aged around 11, that offers students an ‘understanding of other cultures,’ according to the Ministry of Education,” Barnabas Fund said.
Daniel Defoe’s 1718 classic “Robinson Crusoe” notes that the castaway searched “among the wreckage of his ship to rescue three Bibles.”
The Chinese version says Crusoe saved “a few books.”
Danish writer Hans Christian Anderson said in his 1845 short story “The Little Match Girl” that “when a star falls, a soul goes to be with God.”
Now that person “leaves this world.”
Anton Chekhov’s story “Vanka” receives similar treatment, with a section about a prayer in church eliminated and every mention of the word Christ erased.
Last year, the communist regime controlling China cracked down on the sales of Bibles in stores and online.
And single-word online searches for “Bible” have dropped to zero.
The moves followed the government’s “White Paper” on religion, which introduced new policies “to reinterpret Christianity according to secular socialist views.”
“The ‘five-year plan’ outlines measures to enforce the selective interpretation of Scripture in such a way as to affirm and promote ‘the core values of socialism’ within all Christian faith communities and forms of worship,” Barnabas said.
The nation’s laws allow religious organizations to produce publications such as the Bible but not for “public distribution.”
“The communist government recognizes only state-registered Protestant and Roman Catholic churches, officially admitting to the existence of around 22 million Christians, although there may be as many as 100 million Christians when figures for ‘underground’ churches are included,” Barnabas said.
The report said that by 2030, there could be more than 160 million Christians in China.