Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Power of Prayer and Petitions

I recently received the email below from Voice of the Martyrs, a non-profit organization that serves the persecuted Christian church worldwide. Presently, Mr. Gao Zhisheng, a Chinese Christian lawyer, has been imprisoned and tortured by the Communist government there. A worldwide support effort has been launched for Mr. Gao, and an online petition has reached over 50,000 signatures. Mr. Gao's wife, Geng He, has submitted an open letter to the US Congress, and through these efforts, Mr. Gao's case was heard on the Senate floor at Capitol Hill.

I have never personally been one for submitting letters to elected officials or signing petitions--I have always left those things to those so inclined....and stuck to personal support and efforts. But there is a powerful voice in the letters sent to elected officials, as seen here, wherein the Communist government of one of the world's most populous nations and most powerful economic centers has been moved by them. Prayer and petition can go far, and I thought I would post this here as a reminder and encouragement for Schapelle's supporters who have done the same:

DAY 85: Gao Zhisheng's Wife Pleads for U.S. Congress to Intervene and Delivers First Installment of Petition

"My name is Geng He and I am the wife of political prisoner and lawyer Gao Zhisheng, who is currently being persecuted in mainland China. On March 11 this year, I arrived in the United States with my son and daughter for political asylum. ... We are safe now, but my husband's situation has become more perilous...

"In the past, whenever I was worried about my husband because of his challenges against tyranny, he would often console me by saying...that if one day he would be persecuted because of his ideals and sense of justice, the people in the world who believe in justice would stand by him and support him. I know that he would still harbor this light and hope in his heart while enduring various torments in prison!"

-- Geng He's open letter to the U.S. Congress asking for Congress to intervene on behalf of her husband Gao Zhisheng. Read full letter.

Tens of thousands have brought reality to Gao's hope, by standing with him and crying out for his release and for justice on his behalf. Around the world, those who believe in truth and freedom have prayed, signed the petition, shared it with family and friends and e-mailed Chinese government officials calling for his release.

Because of your efforts, last week, Geng He, together with ChinaAid president Bob Fu, presented the first installment of more than 50,000 signatures from to the co-chairman of the Congressional - Executive Commission on China, U.S. Senator Bryon Dorgan. Simultaneously, ChinaAid delivered the petition to the Chinese Embassy. On Monday, April 27, ChinaAid delivered the petition to office of the Secretary of State. View photos of the petition deliveries.

In addition, Senator Dorgan spoke about Gao's case from the Senate floor, calling the Chinese government to account for Gao's treatment. He also urged the Senate to petition the Chinese government for Gao's immediate release. Other leading senators stood up immediately following Senator Dorgan's speech to express their support for additional actions on behalf of Gao. Read Senator Dorgan's speech.

These tangible demonstrations of concern for Gao from around the world are reverberating through the Communist Party. Contacts inside China say that the wall of silence around Gao Zhisheng's captivity has begun to crack, and have asked ChinaAid to convey their plea for an increase of pressure for Gao's release.

Thank you for your continued partnership in this campaign to free Gao Zhisheng. Your prayers, sending e-mails to Chinese government officials, and forwarding this campaign to family and friends are invaluable to this movement. To quote Gao, "the increased level of confidence of the Chinese Communist Party in treating people with increased cold-blooded brutality and cruelty is the direct result of our silence." Thank you for speaking out during this critical hour in the life of Gao Zhisheng.

To see the latest information, make an online donation, view the latest signature totals on the petition, see photos, read Senator Dorgan's speech to the Senate and view the full text of Geng He's letter go to

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