(Minghui.org) On September 14, 2012, Falun Gong practitioners from the Western United States held a candlelight vigil outside the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco to commemorate practitioners who have died in the persecution in China and to call for support from all people.



Practitioners rally outside the Chinese Consulate in San Francisco

Practitioner Ms. Gu came to the United States last year. From 1999 to 2002, she was arrested nine times because of her belief in Falun Gong. The last time she was arrested, in 2002, she was sentenced to five years in prison. While in custody, she was subjected to frequent electric baton shocks, and was suspended in the air by her handcuffs from behind. Ms. Gu was also shackled to a bed with her limbs stretched out tightly. She was tortured like this because the Chinese Communist regime wanted to destroy her will and force her to quit the practice of Falun Gong.

At the vigil, Ms. Gu said, “As I know their suffering, I must stand up now for practitioners who are still being detained in China. Like fellow practitioners around the world, we come here peacefully to show people what Falun Gong is and to call for help to end this persecution.”

Practitioner Ms. Shang started her journey with Falun Gong in 1996. She was a middle school teacher and had several chronic diseases. However, she regained health shortly after she started to practice Falun Gong. In addition, her mind became clear and she felt relief from work stress.

In the past, she used to punish her students physically and even tore up her students' homework when they did poorly. After she started to practice Falun Gong, she realized that she should treat her students with true compassion and guide them with the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. She was later recognized for her exemplary performance at school.

Speaking about the vigil, Ms. Shang said, “We are here to call for an immediate end to the persecution in China. Falun Gong practitioners follow the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, and the practice gives society nothing but positive benefits. We hope that governments and people around the world will side with these principles and help us end the persecution.”