Choi Kwanghyuk and all other North Korean Christians
North Korea has been a breeding place for nightmares for many years. Desperate escapees, however, have been able to shed light on the true horrors taking place within the dictatorship. Starvation and malnutrition run rampant, and citizens are arrested, tortured and murdered on a regular basis. The once proud nation is on its knees, and the place that was once called the “Jerusalem of the East” has become more akin to Nero’s Rome.
Despite the danger, Choi Kwanghyuk started a secret, underground church. There were only nine people and one Bible, but they managed to answer God’s call until 2008 when Kwanghyuk was arrested. He was imprisoned, tortured and eventually sent to a labor camp before managing to escape and find asylum in America in 2013.
North Korean Christians must go to extreme lengths to hide their faith lest they face the same. Bibles are hidden inside walls, and there is always the risk that church members are government spies. Teachers have even been known to trick children into searching for “the book”
in order to earn a special reward at school. When a child finds a Bible, their parents are arrested. Despite the terror, however, Christianity is actually growing inside North Korea just as it once did in Rome.