On Wednesday, 13 tons of human hair from a Chinese labor camp was confiscated by US Border Patrol, according to recent reports. Shipping containers full of hair weaves and other beauty accessories, worth about $800,000 USD, were found in the shipment.
The hair is said to have originated from Xinjiang re-education camps, officially called Vocational Education and Training Centers by the government of the People’s Republic of China, where a number of Christians are said to be held.
The main religion in Xinjiang Province is Islam and because of the violence in the region associated with ISIS, China has taken steps to re-educate the Muslim minority in hopes to dilute the message of jihad in the country. However, Christians have also been caught in the cross-fire.
Christians in Xinjiang’s Muslim communities are considered to be an unnecessary agitant; many of them have also been sent to the internment camps.
Xinjiang is a special region, because the women are known to grow their hair really long. The minority group in the province have annual competitions to see who has the longest hair. The re-education camps in the area have found a use for their long hair and there are many companies in the west – like America – that are standing in line to buy the products.
Christians have often been forced to make products for the western market. In 2016, BTJ published a book called “Christmas in China”, where we shared a story of a leading Chinese pastor that remembers being forced to make Christmas lights for retail chains while he was in prison for his belief in Jesus Christ. The pastor recalled waking up in the dark and working more than 10-12 hours every day in unsafe conditions, often at the threat of being beaten if he didn’t work hard enough. The pastor found it a little ironic that China was making profit from forcing him to make decorations used to celebrated the very same God that he was being punished for serving.
What is happening in Xinjiang is sad,
but there are ways that you can help.
First – you can PRAY.
Xinjiang is one of the most unreached areas in all of China. The majority of the people have never heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Your prayers for the minority groups in Xinjiang Province are desperately needed.
Second – you can HELP.
BTJ has been working in Xinjiang Province for a couple of decades and currently there are several projects that need your help right now:
This is one of our biggest needs in Western China. More than 1.5 million Muslims have been detained and sent to re-education camps and their children have been left behind. Many of these children do not have access to a school or proper nutrition. BTJ helps run primary and secondary schools that provide a Christian education to these children, teach them to speak the Chinese language, and provide free warm meals. We have seen more than 50% of the students accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. You can donate to this effort by clicking here.
BTJ currently supports 210 evangelists in western China, many of them are serving in Xinjiang. Currently BTJ is supporting evangelists that are ministering outside the re-education camps. For security reasons, we are not able to give details about their vital work, but what they are doing is changing thousands of lives and giving hope to so many people that feel absolutely hopeless right now. You can donate to their efforts by clicking here.
Inmates in the re-education camp are unable to take any personal belongings with them. The re-education camp is essentially the same as a prison, but BTJ’s pill size hologram Bible is the perfect size for secretly smuggling into the camps. Our goal is to hopefully provide these and other Bibles to the Xinjiang people. To help with this effort click here.
If you do not know what you would like to help with specifically, but you know that you would simply like to help – then please consider become a regular partner with BTJ by clicking here. Those that give on a regular basis to BTJ become special partners known as GateKeepers. GateKeepers allow us to meet the needs as they arrive. GateKeepers are absolutely essential to everything that we do in Xinjiang Province.
Your help is needed more now than ever.