After appointing Li Enjiu as the standard bearer for Hong Junsheng’s Taijiquan in 2002, the Hong family appointed Chen Zhonghua as the international standard bearer for Hong’s Practical Method system on June 19th, 2005. The ceremony was held at the First Annual International Symposium of Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method System. Standard Bearer Li Enjiu attended and presided over the ceremony. Hong Junsheng’s senior son Hong Youren came from Cangzhou for this special occasion. He issued the official certificate to Chen Zhonghua on behalf of the Hong family. On this historical day, Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method enthusiasts from China and abroad gathered at the second floor of the Shun Geng Shan Zhang International Conference Center in Jinan.
Attending this ceremony were: former director of the sports commission and friend of master Hong Junsheng, Mr. Zhou Lifen, Hong Youren, Hong Youyi, Hong Sen, Hong Lin and more than 20 Hong’s family members. Disciples of Hong Junsheng who attended this ceremony were: standard bearer Li Enjiu, Xu Guicheng, Zhan Dingguo, Cai Shengye, Chao Xiuzhen, Pang Yuzhu, Liu Xiuwen, Wang Jinxuan, Li Shufeng, and Ha Lezhi. During this time, master Chen Zhonghua and his students also visited Meng Xianbin, who could not attend the ceremony because of family illness.
At the ceremony, Hong’s senior son Hong Youren recalled stories of Hong Junsheng. Hong’s No. 6 son Hong Youyi talked about the special abilities of Hong Junsheng. He specifically warned everybody about the rumors of Hong’s abilities. He stressed that everyone of Hong’s disciples should follow Hong’s tradition of “true to the art” and not exaggerate Taijiquan or Hong’s ability. He expressed hopes for all Hong disciples and students to be united in promoting his art and his legacy.
He then recounted the process of how Chen Zhonghua was chosen by the family as Hong’s international standard bearer. Li Enjiu introduced Chen Zhonghua to the world as the international standard bearer and in his own words told the story of how Chen Zhonghua studied from Hong Junsheng.
After the ceremony, master Li Enjiu gave a brief seminar on the two circles of taijiquan and their applications.
Hong Junsheng’s grandson Hong Sen demonstrated Hong’s Yilu Routine while grand disciple Du Lingong demonstrated Cannon Fist. A demonstration and a challenge push hands were conducted at the end of the event.
On June 18th, 2004, Chen Zhonghua, Li Enjiu and Hong Youyi co-sponsored the “First International Hong Junsheng Chen Style Taijiquan Seminar”. Most of Hong Junsheng’s disciples attended the seminar with students. Chen Zhonghua attended as a host and also delegation leader with 20 students from North America. They were: Ronnie Yee, Kee Hong, Yaron Seidman, Richard Johnson, Roy Dawson,Charles Paoletti, Rickard Aguilar, Carl Lindber,Todd McGown, Gordon Muir, Jesse Thomas, Colin Lee, Scott Elash, Jerry Arsenault, Tammy Yee, James Peters, David McBride, Matthew Landau, and Taly Falous.
At the conference, Xu Guicheng and other disciples of Hong Junsheng reminisced on the Taiji career of grandmaster Hong Junsheng. They related many private anecdotes of the teacher Hong Junsheng to the students at the conference. Teacher Chen Zhonghua gave an introduction of the development and promotion of Hong Junsheng’s Chen Style Taijiquan outside of China.
The conference was temporarily chaired by the international standard bearer Chen Zhonghua as the standard bearer master Li Enjiu was in Beijing for an important international activity. All the guests were introduced by their teachers. Xu Guicheng led the Hong disciples to give a talk at the conference. Accompanied by students, he first demonstrated several moves of the form. Then he explained the applications on his student. At the age of 83 years, he moved like a young man. His Taiji moves were light and natural. He was like a fierce tiger coming down the mountain. He threw his young student around as though the student was a rag doll. His title as Hong’s favorite disciple was fully deserved.
Teacher Cai Shengye performed Cannon Fist. Near retirement, Cai was like a young man. Without losing breath, he finished Cannon Fist. In his jumps and hops, he also showed the side of softness. No wonder at the time he started with Hong, this young man was the apple of the eye of his teacher.
Teacher Ha Lezhi gave a wonderful report on Chen Style Taijiquan. After that, all the disciples of Hong Junsheng went to the center stage to perform their forms. Indeed it was an eye-opening scene.