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China to stage programs promoting Lei Feng spirit

China Daily

BEIJING - Chinese Communist Party publicity officers have called for more efforts in promoting the spirit of Lei Feng, a member of the People's Liberation Army, who is widely known for selflessness.

The Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee said on Monday nine programs will be launched to promote the spirit of Lei Feng (1940-62).

Lei, a young soldier, is known as a role model symbolizing selflessness, dedication and thrift. He was killed during an accident while doing a task.

Lei became a household name after Chairman Mao Zedong called on the public to learn from him in 1963.

The nine programs include a "Chinese citizens' ethics forum" scheduled to be held each year in March. And every two years, a group of national morals models will be selected. Material support will be given to models in need to make their lives easier.

Lectures, exhibitions, and other means will be used to pass on Lei Feng's story to school students.

Shen Weichen, deputy head of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee, said academic organizations dedicated to studying Lei Feng will also be set up.

Luo Shugang, executive deputy head of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee, said Lei Feng's spirit should be widely promoted in society now.

"Though we have made great progress in building morality over the decades, we have also encountered some problems at the same time, such as the loss of good faith in certain fields and distortions of some people's values," Luo said.

"To solve such problems and to enhance building morality, the public is called upon to emulate Lei Feng's spirit to reflect social integrity and represent mainstream values of the society," he said.

Luo said one of the best ways to practice Lei Feng's spirit in daily life is to join voluntary services, which have no time, geographical or professional restrictions.

Guo Mingyi, a 53-year-old who works at a steel company in Liaoning province, is a model practitioner of the spirit and has been called a "modern-day Lei Feng".

Guo has donated more than 60,000 milliliters of blood in the past 21 years.

"Many people care too much about what they do not possess and what they can get from other people and society, but they seldom think about what they can do for others," Guo told China Daily.

Xia Xueluan, a sociologist with Peking University, said Lei Feng's spirit will never be outdated and it's necessary and important especially at this time, when the young people are to some extent losing fundamental moral values.