Last Saturday I went to Marburg's city hall to supervise the photo exhibit "The Journey of Falun Dafa."

As I was sorting the Falun Dafa materials on a table, I noticed a new signature on the petition. The name read "Helmut Stern." I was happy to have another signature added to the petition and thought no more about it. At the same time an event took place in the adjoining meeting hall, right across from the photo exhibit. A visitor informed me that someone was going to give a reading. Another visitor, an elderly gentleman who walked past told me that he teaches German to foreigners and his colleagues had at one time been to Shanghai, my hometown, on business. I told him the story of Falun Gong. Before he went into the meeting hall for the reading he promised to converse with me afterwards.

He kept his promise and did indeed seek me out again after the event. Many of those who had listened to the reading milled around talking in the foyer. He told me that he recently attended the 40th anniversary celebration of the ecumenical conference of Christians and Jews in Marburg. The group had invited a musician by the name of Helmut Stern. It was he who had introduced and read from his book at this event. Then, this nice gentleman took my arm and steered me toward Mr. Stern and introduced me.

To my great surprise he greeted me in Chinese, "Ni Hao." (Hello) and "Na Li Lai?" (Where do you come from?) To my response that I come from Shanghai he told me that he was from Harbin, a well-known city in northern China. I turned back to the nice older gentleman who had introduced us and noticed he held a book. The back cover of the book jacket gave a brief biographical sketch of Mr. Stern's life -- he plays the first violin (known as the title of concertmaster) with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, a famous and respected group of musicians in the classical music world. Because of the Nazi persecution during WW II, Mr. Stern had been in exile in many countries, including in China. The book was his autobiography.

Mr. Stern wanted to move on right away. I took the opportunity to present him with a Dafa newspaper and a bookmark. He told me that he had already helped himself earlier, and also signed the petition. Only then did it dawn on me which Helmut Stern this was. In Chinese I told him "xie, xie." (Thank you) He responded in Chinese "you are doing a good job. Good luck!"

November 1, 2001