Reminiscent of the underground churches in Iran and Communist China, churches in Britain have been forced to secretly go underground to hold services in the face of the government’s COVID-1984 lockdowns. And they don’t use social media or texts to spread word about these illegal services, they do it the old-fashioned way — word of mouth — in order to avoid detection.
The Guardian explains:
(THE GUARDIAN) — It sounds like the build-up to an illegal rave. Invitations are passed by word of mouth to trusted people. Minimal information – time, directions – is quietly given with pleas for discretion. Once everyone is assembled in a barn on a remote farm – “away from prying eyes,” says the organiser – it begins.
This is no rave, but an English church service under lockdown, and the organiser is a Protestant pastor. The Christians who will gather illegally in the west of England on Sunday morning – as they have for the past two Sundays – will pray, read from the scriptures, sing hymns and listen to a sermon.
“We’ve been holding clandestine services since this lockdown began,” the pastor told the Observer, speaking on condition of anonymity. “It feels weird for us to act this way. People have said it feels more like an underground church in China.
Some Christians may be shocked by this type of behaviour, but when leaders of the early church in the Book of Acts were thrown in jail for holding church services, in several instances God sent angels to actually break the apostles out of jail. Yes, angels broke human law to release believers from prison (Acts 5: 17-20, Acts 12:1-17.)
Under the country’s draconian lockdown rules, churches are only allowed to use their building for people seeking private prayer times or for broadcasting services.
According to Premier Christian News, last week police raided a church in North London to break up a baptismal service and The Mustard Seed bookstore was fined £17,000 for allegedly violating lockdown restrictions.