On April 25, 1999, over 10,000 Falun Gong practitioners gathered at Beijing's State Appeals Office, requesting the release of illegally arrested Falun Gong practitioners in Tianjin. The Jiang regime's reaction to this peaceful appeal was to launch an unprecedented, nationwide bloody campaign of persecution three months later.
Over the past three years, Jiang's regime has taken various despicable means to abuse Falun Gong practitioners. Up until now, 402 Falun Gong cultivators have been tortured to death, and countless more have been sentenced to jail terms or forced into mental hospitals, sent to forced labor camps without due process of law, arrested and detained, and brutally beaten, abused and mistreated by police. Many practitioners' families were broken up and their children were left without care. Many relatives, friends and colleagues have been implicated.
However, In the face of brutal persecution, disregarding the tremendous hardships they suffered, Dafa practitioners have been peacefully appealing and clarifying the truth about Falun Gong to the public. Changchun practitioners' truth-clarifying broadcast through the cable TV network in March 2002 exposed the Jiang regime's evil deeds. It enabled many people to learn the truth and suffocated the evil. More and more western Dafa practitioners courageously appealed on Tiananmen Square, shouting out loud, "Falun Dafa is good!" Their feat made the deceived Chinese people know that Falun Dafa has been spread extensively all over the world and has been well received. Now, more and more countries and people know that Falun Dafa is good and support Falun Dafa.
In order to mourn the Dafa practitioners who lost their lives in the persecution and to rescue fellow practitioners who are enduring great suffering, and whose lives are in danger, Houston Dafa practitioners held a candlelight vigil in front of the Chinese Consulate from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. on April 25. Practitioners sent forth righteous thoughts and practiced the exercises. Some young practitioners and their parents also took part in the activity.