This Friday, I have the honor of attending the award ceremony for the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize winner as an international guest invited by the Nobel Peace Prize Committee. As I am sure all of you know, the winner himself, Dr. Liu Xiaobo, will not be able to attend as he is serving an 11-year sentence for his writing.
While in Oslo, I will be working on behalf of another Chinese hero who cannot attend the ceremony: two-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee Gao Zhisheng, nominated in 2008 and 2010. I will be going to the Chinese embassy in Norway to present a petition with nearly 150,000 signatures—from supporters like you—calling for the return of the missing Christian attorney.
I will also have an opportunity to meet with Norwegian Parliament leaders and other world leaders to press for religious freedom and rule of law in China.
European human rights activists, lawyers, leaders from non-governmental organizations and citizens in nations around the world will be joining this international effort to free Gao; 15 Chinese embassies or consulates will be served with the petition and signatures! Please see the list towards the end of this email to see who is heading up the effort in your country or city so that you can pray for this person by name.
As 2010 draws to a close, we see troubling signs that the Chinese government is tightening up on dissent in response to events such as the selection of Dr. Liu to receive this year’s Nobel Peace Prize. A climate of official intimidation and hostility can only further worsen the fate of activists such as Gao.
Recent efforts by Gao’s family members have failed to induce any action from either Washington or Beijing. Pleas for help from Gao’s daughter to President Obama have so far yielded nothing but silence. Gao’s older brother went to Beijing to search for him but was met with scoffing from the police. See these news reports about their efforts:
ChinaAid – Gao Zhisheng’s Brother Appeals in Beijing
Wall Street Journal – Again, Where is Gao Zhisheng?
BBC News – Daughter Pleads for Lawyer Gao Zhisheng
Wall Street Journal – Please Return My Father – Gege’s Plea
In light of a harsher political climate for dissents in China, we at ChinaAid are ready to double our efforts in this fight. In the face of discouragement over the lack of progress in Gao’s case, we at ChinaAid appeal to you—our supporters from all around the world—to support the persecuted in prayer and advocacy.
Let us persist!
Will you stand for Gao and his family, proclaiming that he is not forgotten? Consider sharing Gao’s story with three friends, and ask them to sign up to receive updates at FreeGao.com.
You can also send a postcard to Gao’s wife, Geng He, his daughter Gege and son Tianyu. Send your encouraging and uplifting words to ChinaAid, and we will forward it to this hurting family. Mail your letters to: The family of Gao Zhisheng, ℅ ChinaAid Association, P.O. Box 8513, Midland, Texas 79708.
What the enemy wants from us is silence. If we do not pray and speak out, the enemy prevails. One attempt to keep us silent—and to keep you uninformed—has been the cyber-attacks that crashed our websites at ChinaAid.net, MonitorChina.org and FreeAlim.com last Tuesday. They have since been restored. A few days later, our English-language site at ChinaAid.org collapsed under another barrage of heavy malicious traffic. Thankfully, that webpage is up and running again.
With these intensified attacks from both our earthly and our spiritual enemies, I am making this personal appeal to you to stand with us in this fight to keep information flowing about what is happening in China to heroes like Gao. In this Christmas season, I appeal to you to make a New Year’s resolution to continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with ChinaAid in supporting the persecuted faithful like brother Gao. Your financial partnership is critical in fighting this battle! Your prayers are invaluable!
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President of ChinaAid: Rev. Bob Fu
We Will Not Back Down – Free Gao Zhisheng!