(Clearwisdom.net) On the afternoon of October 4, 2002 at Springfield City Hall's conference room, Falun Gong practitioners from the City of Springfield and surrounding cities celebrated the City of Springfield's "Falun Gong --Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance Month." They also held a press conference calling for the urgent rescue of their family members persecuted in China due to their belief in Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance.

Mayor of Springfield giving a speech Proclamation from the City of Springfield Ms. Wu speaking on behalf of practitioners.

The Mayor of Springfield, Michael J. Albano, attended the ceremony and gave a speech. Before this, Mr. Albano had issued two proclamations for Falun Gong. Now he proclaimed the month of October to be "Falun Gong --Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance Month" in the City of Springfield. In his speech he talked about how China's continuing persecution of Falun Gong is a persecution against basic human rights. He discussed how the international community needs to be clear about this persecution and demand the Chinese government to stop the persecution. He said, "Issuing this proclamation is to openly state our stance on this issue. On behalf of the people of Springfield, I call upon the Chinese government to put an end to this persecution." In his speech he praised Falun Gong practitioners for bringing this mind and body practice to the people of Springfield through free classes, and they loved the exercises. He further encouraged the people of Springfield to practice these beneficial exercises.

Scott, a practitioner from Connecticut, hosted the press conference and read a statement calling for all governments, media agencies and people from all walks of life to be concerned and help rescue practitioners' family members persecuted in China. New York State practitioner Xueyuan Wu spoke on behalf of practitioners. She thanked the continuing support of the mayor and residents of Springfield. She then told what her mother, a physics professor, had experienced in a forced labor camp. Dr. He Haiying from Harvard medical school shared with the attendees the sufferings his family members in China had experienced because they practiced Falun Gong. All the people in the conference were moved by their testimonies.

Two local TV stations and the city's cable TV station reported on the event. Practitioners will hold a one-month "Journey of Falun Dafa Photo Exhibition" in honor of the ""Falun Gong --Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance Month" and free Falun Gong classes at local public libraries.