(Minghui.org) The West US Tian Guo Marching Band participated the 172nd San Francisco St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Saturday, March 11, 2023. The Tian Guo Marching Band is unique among marching bands, as it is composed entirely of Falun Dafa practitioners. A woman from China who saw the band in a parade for the first time exclaimed, “They are magnificent!”

Falun Dafa practitioners participate in the 172nd San Francisco St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

Spectators take a selfie with the Tian Guo Marching Band in the background.

The Tian Guo Marching Band performs in front of the parade organizer’s booth.

Practitioners handed out information leaflets about Falun Dafa along the parade route.

The popular, annual parade featured over one hundred floats, Irish dance troupes and marching bands. Despite the slight drizzle that day, both sides of the street were lined with people. Dressed in blue and white Tang Dynasty costumes, the Tian Guo Marching Band played several songs including “Falun Dafa Is Great” and were enthusiastically welcomed by spectators. Many people said they were the best group in the parade.

Several people danced in time to the band’s music and some had their photos taken with practitioners. Spectators clapped enthusiastically for practitioners. Some people were so moved by the band’s performance, they bowed and thanked practitioners.

Others called out loudly as practitioners marched past, “Falun Dafa is my hero.” People from China, who cannot see such a band in their home country, also praised practitioners and some remarked, “Falun Dafa is great.”

Immigrant from China: “Falun Gong Is Good!”

Ms. Cui from China was impressed by the practitioners’ performance in the parade. She said, “They are magnificent! Majestic and orderly. I know Falun Gong is good.”

Ms. Cui who moved to the U.S. from China said, “The songs played by Falun Gong practitioners are great!” She said she’s lived in San Francisco for over a decade, but this was the first time she saw practitioners in a parade. “They are magnificent! Majestic and orderly. I know Falun Gong is good,” she said.

“I know there is a book, Zhuan Falun, and I always wanted to read it. But I don’t know where to buy one.” A practitioner told her she could purchase it from the falundafa.org website. Ms. Cui wrote down the information.

Jessie from New York, who was traveling in San Francisco, said it was the first time she’d heard of Falun Gong. “This group is beautiful! This is the perfect way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Their costumes are beautiful, the music is great. America really needs Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance at the moment. They are a group of beautiful people,” she said.

Ms. Ming, who lives in San Francisco, and her husband clapped delightedly when they saw practitioners in the parade. She also bowed to them. Ms. Ming said it was great to see different ethnic groups in the parade. “Their performance was of a high standard. They brought us a feeling of tranquility. I love the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.”

Mary Taylor said, “They are the best group I have seen in my life! Exquisite!” She asked, “Where are they from?” When she learned the band members were Falun Gong practitioners from various parts of the San Francisco Bay area and that Falun Gong teaches people to follow Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, she said, “Excellent! Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is great. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!”

Matt Handy said he loved the principles taught by Falun Gong – Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance.

Matt Handy, from Salt Lake City, explained that he’s seen practitioners in Amsterdam. “I heard of Falun Gong before. I received a flier in Amsterdam. I love the principles taught by Falun Gong – Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. I know there are over 100 million people practicing Falun Gong around the world. They don’t take drugs or drink alcohol.” Then, referring to the 23-year persecution of Falun Gong in China, he said, “Everyone should have freedom of belief.”

Practitioners Are Role Models

Ms. Gina O’Connor said that Falun Dafa practitioners are heroes and are worthy of respect.

When practitioners stopped to perform in front of the organizer’s viewing stage, a spectator said, “Falun Dafa practitioners are my heroes. They are not afraid of the Chinese Communist regime.” His wife Gina O’Connor said, “Their performance is very moving. I support them and what they do. They are heroes, worthy of respect. What they do is right.”

She continued, “I love the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. Unfortunately, practitioners are persecuted in China. They are a role model for others, people should be like them. The world needs Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance. All of us need these values.”

“I Hope the CCP Collapses”

Jake Henderson said he supports the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance 100 percent.

Jake Henderson, from San Francisco, saw the parade with his girlfriend from China. He admired the practitioners and said, “They are excellent. They look energetic, beautiful! Their performance was great, very orderly. Exhilarating!”

He said he knew about Falun Dafa. “I support the principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance 100 percent. The world should support these principles. My girlfriend is from China, so therefore I know all about Falun Dafa. I know it is suppressed in China. I hope the CCP collapses.”

Background: What Is Falun Dafa?

Falun Dafa (also known as Falun Gong) was first introduced to the public by Mr. Li Hongzhi in Changchun, China, in 1992. The spiritual discipline is now practiced in over 100 countries and regions worldwide. Millions of people who have embraced the teachings, which are based on the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance, and have learned the five exercises, have experienced improved health and well-being.