Three Indonesian Churches Closed in Permits Dispute

(World Watch Monitor) Three churches were closed in an Indonesian village last week amidst rumors Muslims were planning to protest against the churches’ presence because they did not have the required permits.

But a pastor from one of the affected churches in West Kenali village, Alam Barajo district, in Sumatra’s central Jambi province, told World Watch Monitor: “We had been worshipping here since 2004 and fulfilled all building license requirements. We have even built a good relationship with the local authorities. Yet, the permit was not granted.”

“The rapid church growth in the area during the last decade may have caused restlessness among the majority-Muslim neighborhood,” said the pastor, who leads an Assemblies of God church.

The other two affected churches belong to the Huria Kristen Indonesia (HKI) and Gereja Methodist Indonesia (GMI) branches.

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