George W. Bush Institute: One Man's Fight for Religious Freedom in China

George W. Bush Institute
Posted by
Elizabeth Hoffman on November 21, 2013

Bob Fu of China Aid Association give Pres and Mrs Bush hand copied bible pages by
Chinese prisoners to become part of the Freedom Collection. Photo by Grant Miller for the
George W. Bush Presidential Center
The towering skyscrapers and modern architecture of cities like Beijing, Tianjin and Shanghai leave many visitors in awe of the staggering economic progress China has made in recent years. Indeed, China’s economic reforms have pulled more than 500 million of its citizens out of abject poverty and into the middle class. However, behind the façade of China’s modern cities are personal stories of enormous suffering on account of a basic principle we sometimes take for granted in the West: religious freedom.

In God’s Double Agent: The True Story of a Chinese Christian’s Fight for Freedom, former Chinese dissident and religious prisoner Bob Fu offers a rare glimpse into the hardships and persecution endured by people of faith at the hands of China’s Communist Party. In this deeply personal account of his family, faith, imprisonment for “illegal evangelism” and eventual escape from China, Fu exposes some of China’s most brutal government practices including the enforcement of the one-child per couple policy and continued repression of political and religious dissidents.

After spending two months in prison for running a training program for pastors in the underground “house church” movement, Bob and his wife Heidi continued to face harassment by authorities. Bob was fired from his job teaching English at the Communist Party School, and shortly thereafter the couple discovered that Heidi was pregnant but lacked the requisite “birth permit” which allows a married couple in China to conceive a child. Fearing that Heidi would be subjected to a forced abortion once her pregnancy was discovered, the Fus made a run for it in the dark of night. They left everything behind and fled to Hong Kong, which was still under British control at the time. A day before the British turned Hong Kong over to Chinese rule, Bob and Heidi received political asylum and boarded a plane bound for the U.S.

Since receiving asylum in the United States in 1997, Bob and Heidi have continued their quest to bring religious freedom to China. The book shares numerous accounts of Fu’s James Bond-esque escapades to bring other Chinese dissidents and their families to safety. These stories will keep you on the edge of your seat. Fu is also featured in the Bush Institute’s Freedom Collection.

In an endorsement of God’s Double Agent, former First Lady Laura Bush stated, “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.” One thing is certain -- as long as Bob Fu is around, the fight for religious freedom in China will continue.