China is the world’s most populous nation with 1.3 billion people. To stem the country’s birth rate and conserve natural resources, Chinese government officials instituted a drastic family planning policy in the late 1970s that restricted the number of births in each family to only one child. This policy, generally known as the “one child policy,” is still in place today.
By all accounts, the one child policy has been effective: China’s fertility rate (the number of births per woman) is 1.7, much lower than in the U.S. where it is 2.1. The U.S. State Department has said that the law has had “extremely negative social, economic, and human rights consequences” for China.
“The Chinese government estimates that since 1979 it has prevented the birth of 400 million babies”
The extent of the Chinese government’s control and interference in family life and family planning also worries many human rights advocates. But the Chinese government and others in the international community see conservation of natural resources as a higher priority. The Chinese government estimates that since 1979 it has prevented the birth of 400 million babies and says the family planning policy has aided the nation’s rapid economic development.
- Pray that couples would respect the inherent worth and dignity of each child, regardless of gender, from conception to adulthood.
- Pray that families who live in fear of government sanctions for having extra children will find peace in Jesus Christ.
- Pray that Christian couples who see no other option but to obey the government’s family planning orders or become social pariah will find the courage and wisdom to do what is right.
- Pray that despite the lack of churches, Christian training, and even Bibles, Christian couples will have an understanding of the biblical position concerning abortion.
- Pray for the emotional and physical healing of women who have been coerced into having abortions.
- Pray that those in desperate need of counsel in a country where seeking emotional counseling is not culturally acceptable will receive words of encouragement and wisdom from godly men and women.
- Pray for healing for couples dealing with the effects of forced sterilization.
- Pray that abortion and infanticide will stop.
- Pray that abandoned baby girls will be adopted into Christian homes where they can learn about Jesus and be discipled by godly parents.
For more information on the one child policy and government-imposed sanctions for parents with more than one child, see PrayerWalk Beijing.