Christians in Wenzhou, China, barricaded themselves inside the gates of their church to prevent the Chinese government from tearing down the cross that stood proudly on the steeple of their church.

Video obtained by CNN shows the Chinese police beating the protesters in an attempt to gain access. They were thwarted by the Christian protesters, who, for more than two months have stayed on the grounds, day and night, to keep the police from tearing down their cross.

The attempt to remove this church’s cross is not an isolated incident. For the past year, the Communist Party has been tearing down Christian crosses, as FEBC reported earlier this year. Although the Communist Party has asserted that the crosses are being taken down due to zoning regulations, an internal government document shows that the Chinese government’s priority is to “remove crosses at religious activity sites…Over time and in batches, bring down the crosses from the rooftops to the facades of the building,” reported the New York Times on May 29, 2014.

Since this memo was first released, many churches have been destroyed, and hundreds of crosses removed from buildings.

China is predicted to have the largest Christian population in the world by 2030, some say, and with this prominence comes a growing concern from the Chinese Communist Party, which sees this growth as a threat.

While the congregants of Salvation Church in Wenzhou, China, were initially able to restrain the police, eventually they returned with reinforcements and tore the cross down.

Despite these measures, the church still stands, and for most of the Christians whose churches have been destroyed, so does their faith.

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