May 4, 2012
Yesterday, Congressman Chris Smith of New Jersey came to a meeting we were holding and updated us on the circumstances surrounding Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng. Chris is a senior member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and chairs the Congressional-Executive Committee on China. He is also one of the boldest Christians in Congress and a longtime friend of Faith and Action. Moments after meeting with us, he went into a special hearing where he received a personal phone call from Chen. You probably saw this in the national news. Chris expressed alarm to us about Chen’s safety. He also conveyed profound concern about how Chen was handled by the State Department. Even though the State Department has now “arranged for Chen to come to the U.S.,” we know they already abandoned Chen once. We will not allow them to abandon him again. We will not stand by as our government plays political tricks with people’s lives in what former Governor Mitt Romney called “a dark day for freedom.”
C-SPAN covered Chen’s daring but diplomatic phone call to Congressman Smith:
Today, Faith and Action’s partner Rev. Patrick Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition knelt and prayed in front of the White House in solidarity with Chen. Among others, Pat was accompanied by his wife, Katie, Father Victor Salomon of Priests for Life, and Tina Whittington of Students for Life of America. We were there as a prophetic witness to remind President Obama it is unacceptable to sacrifice a hero of liberty and freedom on the altar of economic and political interests.
As I write this, Pat, Katie, and Tina are in jail. Fr. Salomon, working in the United States on a visa from South America, had to step away because it wouldn’t be prudent to endanger his status. Likewise, Charmaine Yoest of Americans United for Life stood with Pat, but had children with her and couldn’t risk being arrested.
So we do face challenges: After all our programs on Capitol Hill this week, our efforts on behalf of Chen are straining us financially to the breaking point. Crises, like what’s happening with Chen, are things we can never plan for—they just happen. But we can never turn our backs on courageous heroes, like Chen, saying, “Sorry, we can’t afford to help you.”
WE MUST HELP THEM!
Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do it. Proverbs 3:27 (NKJV)
We will do everything in our power to assist Chen. Of course, everything we do is the result of the prayers and financial support of our friends like you.
Your gift will help make certain we have the resources to stand as prophetic witnesses on behalf of Chen and his family to the President and to Congress. We will get the message through—but we need your help to do it!
Together we will make our stand in support of Chen and the principles of freedom and human dignity. To support Faith and Action’s work, please click here and make a tax-deductible donation.
Your missionary to our nation’s capital,
Rev. Rob Schenck
See more about our White House vigil for Chen Guangcheng below
Rev. Pat Mahoney on AFA’s Focal Point on May 3