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Wife's letter to imprisoned husband: ‘With love, there is no fear’

Thursday, August 4, 2016

China Aid
Translated by Mark Ma. Written in English by Brynne Lawrence.

(Tianjin, China—Aug. 4, 2016) 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.

Fan Lili and Guo Hongguo pose for
with their son when he was 3 months
old. (Photo: China Aid)
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 a day 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.”

Fan also recalls seeing a high-ranking official in a joyous mood when Gou was taken away. When her husband re-appeared, he was in a wheelchair.

After her husband’s arrest, Fan and her son traveled numerous times to Beijing and Tianjin to look for Gou, but none of the officials admitted to having taken Gou. Half a year later, she writes that learning his charge, though unfounded, provides her with some assurance and comfort, because now, at least she knows her husband is alive.

A full translation of Fan’s letter can be read below.

China Aid exposes abuses, such as those suffered by the family of Gou Hongguo, in order to stand in solidarity with persecuted Christians in China.



Fan Lili, the wife of Gou Hongguo (Ge Ping), who has been charged with subversion: With love, there is no fear!

Ge Ping. Going forward in love. It’s dark and a light rain is pattering down. There has been a lot of rain this year. I heard that the people in Hubei were all confused when the rain finally stopped in the afternoon. I took my child to the public square to feed the pigeons.

Accidentally, I saw a Weibo entry that Gou Hongguo has been prosecuted by the No. 2 Branch of the Tianjin Municipal People’s Procuratorate on the charge of subverting state power. I was startled and felt confused. Things have turned out to be worse than what I expected.

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 a powerful state? I have to re-examine my husband.

Gou Hongguo’s online name is Ge Ping. He is a retired military officer, a Christian, and a businessman who is moderately successful in his field. He is a meticulous and kind-hearted man. For decades, he has taken care of his brother, who suffers from a disability. He remembers his in-laws’ birthdays and selects beautiful, fashionable clothing for them for the occasion. He knows interior decoration and can grow flowers.

A year ago, Ge Ping disappeared from our life. Six months ago, I went to Beijing and Tianjin tens of times with my young son and looked for where he was. No one there stood up and admitted that he or she took Ge Ping away. Half a year later, a notice has ended this stalemate. Although he was smashed over the head with the dunce cap of a “subversion of the state power” charge, my heart is still very comforted. Oh! It is very good to know that he is alive.

July 10, 2015 is a day I will never forget. On that day, Ge Ping wanted those who searched our house to leave behind an ATM card for those of us at home who are old, weak, sick or young, but 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.

I remember a high-ranking official was in a spirited mood when he was taken away. When [Ge Ping] appeared again, he was in a wheelchair. I prayed to God and begged Him to watch over Ge Ping and keep him safe and healthy. I haven’t given him enough love; please give me more opportunities.

I kissed our son, Shaner. He is a lucky child as his father is a man who takes responsibilities and is affectionate. His mother is a kind-hearted person, with a heart that cannot harm anybody. When she sees live poultry being butchered, she immediately recites passages from the Buddhist teachings to help their souls find peace.

Our son, Shaner, is growing up. One moving experience I had with my child came during the night of a storm. I was afraid he might be afraid, so I hugged him and he hugged me with both his arms. His little hands were so warm and strong. Then, I realized it was I who was the fearful one. At that moment, I was no longer afraid, and everything was so beautiful. Together, we quietly wait for his father to come back. Our family has experienced tribulation. Only love remains.

Ge Ping—my dear husband. I firmly believe that you are innocent. No matter how arduous the road ahead of us is, I will be waiting for you. In the darkness, I will give you a little illumination, with [my] heart as a lamp. I will give you more love, though you are already my best love.

Ge Ping’s wife Fan Lili
[Written] in Tianjin on the night of July 15, 2016


China Aid Media Team
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"Bob Fu has dedicated his life to bringing freedom of religion to the Chinese people. His story is a testimony to the power of faith and an inspiration to people struggling to break free from oppression."
—Mrs. Laura Bush

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