Twenty-three years ago, on May 13, 1992, Mr. Li Hongzhi introduced Falun Dafa to the public in China for the first time. About 200 people attended his very first lecture in Changchun in 1992.
Mr. Li continued to hold lectures all around China at a whirlwind pace for the next two years, until the end of 1994. At that time, there were tens of thousands of people practicing Falun Dafa, and the number increased meteorically in the next five years as the practice was spread by word of mouth through families and friends, as people shared their experience of amazing health benefits and improvements in their character.
The number of people practicing Falun Dafa reached 100 million by 1999, when the persecution of the practice in China was initiated by former Chinese dictator Jiang Zemin. The persecution continues to this day.
The 2015 celebration began with a picture exhibit and continued with a rally in Chinatown’s Portsmouth Square.
Several Falun Dafa practitioners shared their experience of the practice, including Maria Centurion, who has been able to apply the three principles of the practice, truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance, to her everyday life, including raising her young daughter.
David Zhang, a radio talk show host from San Francisco, had major health issues, including allergies and back pain, which disappeared after practicing Falun Dafa.
Performances by the Tian Guo Marching Band marked the beginning and end of the rally. Other performances included soprano Shao Yu and Fei Tian Academy of the Arts student Takahashi, whom performed a beautiful flute piece. Fei Tian students performed a number of dances.