ICC Note: When one person is the victim of religious persecution, rarely is it he or she who is the only one to suffer. That person’s spouse, children, and relatives must not only deal with the emotional pain caused by his or her absence; the family’s flow of income and resources will be severely affected as well, if not entirely cut off.
Several Chinese families must have indeed been set into distress last week during the ominous Tianjen trials against human rights advocates. In difficult circumstances as these, a written breath of hope and love like the the letter from Gou Hongguo’s wife is especially precious.
Tianjen, China (China Aid) -On July 15, the wife of an imprisoned Christian penned a letter to her husband, who is being held in Tianjin, describing her reactions to his recent “subverting state power” charge.Fan Lili, the wife of Gou Hongguo, a Christian and retired military official, incidentally learned of her husband’s charge through Weibo, a popular Chinese social media website.
She says, “Subverting state power—a charge that makes me terror-stricken. In the past, I felt such a charge was distant, Even now, I still feel it’s very remote from us. He doesn’t have guns, cannons or money. With what could he subvert such powerful state?”She went on to describe her husband as a “meticulous and kind-hearted man” who has cared for his disabled brother for decades and always remembers her parents’ birthdays.
Police took Gou into police custody on July 10, 2015, during a crackdown on human rights lawyers and dissidents. Fan says, “July 10, 2015 is aday I will never forget. On that day, Ge Ping [Guo’s online pseudonym] wanted those who searched our house to leave behind a bank card for those of us at home who are old, weak and sick.
Yet, they didn’t leave any bank card behind. From his looks, I could tell he was very sad, and I gave him a 100 Yuan bill [U.S. $15], the only money I had in my pocket. When he was taken into the police vehicle, he, with much difficulty, took out the 100 Yuan bill with his handcuffed hand and returned it to me. In this way, we shoved the 100 Yuan bill to each other several times and at last, he still managed to give the money to me. I tried not to let him see the tears in my eyes. What we pushed around to each other is not money, but love.
Pray for the release of God’s people!