Three Women, Three Stories of Pain Inflicted by Communism

Three Women, Three Stories of Pain Inflicted by Communism

In April I heard of 16-year-old Fayuan Chen, a budding musician living in New York state whose bright future suddenly turned gloomy when her parents in China were taken. The Chens were arrested by communist authorities, solely for their faith in the meditation practice Falun Gong. The girl is now left without a source of income, and has been relying on others to help with food and clothing. It was only through the goodwill of friends, and strangers on the internet, that Fayuan was able to cover her tuition for the semester. Now she holds on to faith while awaiting news of her parents.

In June I learned of Amy Minghui Yu, a fashion designer living in the United Kingdom. Amy is in her thirties—and from the time she was 12, her parents have been in and out of Chinese prisons for the same reason as Fayuan’s.

“For more than 10 years, the total time I spent with my parents was less than 24 hours,” Amy wrote. “Countless nights I fell asleep crying and missing them. I couldn’t bear the pain of thinking about my parents’ situation, and I had a huge fear that I may lose them forever, like other Falun Gong kids.”

Different stages of life, same story.

Then I came across an excerpt from the memoirs of the Chinese artist Xu Na. They described recollections of being tortured in Beijing Women’s Prison, where she was held from 2001–2006. Looking at her photo, I felt she could have been my fashionable and worldly older sister.

“How I wish I was imprisoned in Auschwitz concentration camp—not a Chinese prison,” she wrote. “Because in the Nazi gas chamber people can die quickly, but in the Beijing Women’s Prison it’s worse to be alive than dead.”

Her husband, also a talented artist, was lost to torture in a Chinese prison.

A young girl, tender with hope; a doting daughter, anxious for her aging parents; and a free spirit for whom silence would have been worse than death—at different points in life I have been all three of these women. How I wish that I could singlehandedly right the wrongs that cause such unconscionable pain.

But I can’t do it alone. This nation was founded by brave men and women who banded together to uphold justice and liberty. Our world calls for us to band together and be brave again. Please share what you have read here today and pray for those who, unlike ourselves, are not fortunate enough to stand on free soil.