Tag Archives: sex trade

Child Sponsorship: The Best Story That Never Happened

Kirk Bookout with Children of Promise kids.

By Kirk Bookout

What is the best story for Children of Promise? There are stories about children that cause me to laugh with joy, stand in awe, and that bring tears (a big admission for me). Press me to tell you the very best story we have at Children of Promise, and my answer depends on the day. New stories are a constant joy. But it could be said that the best story we have is the story we can never tell. We cannot tell those stories because they never happened. Continue reading

Texas Church Tackles Trafficking on Freedom Sunday

By Jim Feirtag

At Parkgate Community Church, our vision is: “As Jesus gave his life for us, we give our lives for others in our community and world.” For us, that means we love God, love people, and love now! Partnering with CHOGTrafficklight falls well in line with that vision and mission. We were honored to join our brothers and sisters in the Church of God to commemorate Freedom Sunday again this year. We have been engaged in CHOGTrafficklight since the beginning. We believe strongly in this important cause for justice. We are convinced that it’s absolutely in line with our biblical mandate as a church. Continue reading

Partnership with Children of Promise Extends Trafficklight 2.0 Reach

By Paul Maxfield

Children of Promise is partnering with Church of God Ministries in Trafficklight 2.0 to prevent child trafficking for our Church of God children across the globe. We are praying that every congregation will engage in this effort through sponsoring children—which is the most effective way to protect our children and prevent their involvement in child trafficking. I want to share more helpful information as to why Children of Promise is engaging in Trafficklight. 2.0. It is urgent. Continue reading

Freedom Fight Takes Aim at Root Causes of Trafficking

By Carl Stagner

In 2014, the Church of God reintroduced its longstanding commitment to freedom with the launch of CHOG Trafficklight. Since then, the Movement has galvanized around the cause of advancing freedom for the enslaved, the overlooked, and the oppressed through awareness and through support of established organizations. On the heels of Church of God Convention 2017, the first-ever Church of God Freedom Summit not only celebrated the success of CHOG Trafficklight, but also turned our attention to the root causes of trafficking and sexual exploitation. Trafficklight 2.0: Freedom Fight will help us fight a global scourge at an international, domestic, and local church level, even down to our own homes. Continue reading

Freedom Sunday. Freedom Summit. Freedom Fight!

By Carl Stagner

We’re engaged in a battle of historic proportions. The Church of God has once again gone to the front lines of a war against sexual exploitation and human trafficking initially waged more than a hundred years ago. With the launch of Trafficklight in 2014 came a renewed fervor for seeing what Jesus sees, living out Jesus’ example in our neighborhoods, and allowing our hearts to be broken for what breaks his. Together we’ve raised awareness, funded life-changing projects, and touched the lives of trafficking victims through several ministries already in the trenches. Freedom Sunday 2017 offered a preview of what’s to come as we turn our attention to the supply side of human trafficking. Continue reading

Trafficking Victims Find Hope, Healing at Reclaim 2017 Host-City Haven

Photo: Mentoring based on God’s Word at Hope Ranch.

By Carl Stagner

In February 2015, we first shared the story of how Hope Ranch for Women in Wichita, Kansas, came to be. A little over two years later, their story of reclaiming what hell has stolen from the lives of victims of exploitation continues to unfold. With its origins in one of several strong Church of God congregations in Wichita—Christ Church—Hope Ranch will be celebrated at Church of God Convention 2017 for its highly effective ministry. Those who attend the Freedom Summit on Friday, June 23, will also have the chance to tour their life-giving campus. Before you go, get to know a bit about the ministry which has forever changed the course of sex trafficking survivors. Continue reading

Initial Reports Offer Glimpse of Freedom Sunday 2017 Impact

Photo: Creative Freedom Sunday approach in Indianapolis.

By Carl Stagner

The Church of God first took a stand against human trafficking in India more than a century ago. With the inception of CHOG Trafficklight in recent years, the issue has returned to the forefront of ministry made possible only when Church of God congregations rally together. Once again, the Church of God is fighting side by side not only to raise awareness of trafficking, but also to attack the issue at its root. On March 5, 2017, Church of God congregations across North America and beyond showed the same video announcing the launch of Trafficklight 2.0. Many also gave financially to support the Church of God initiative as they renewed their commitment to engage the battle—even in front of screens both large and handheld. The Holy Spirit’s presence was palpable, and several churches have already shared stories of God’s hand at work. Continue reading

Pornography, Trafficking, and the Church

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By Levi Scott

The sexual culture of our world today is one that harms the lives of everyone made in the image of God. The link between pornography and sex trafficking should serve as a warning to all of us. Sadly, surveys reveal that people in our pews—and sometimes pulpits—each contribute to the trafficking industry by our silent acceptance and consumption of pornography. Our world is broken, people in our churches are broken, but many are doing what they can to make a difference. There are many who are actively fighting against the industries that are leaving God’s children in chains, whether in a brothel or behind a computer screen. Continue reading

TraffickLight Video: Thank You, Church of God

Text by Abby Knowles; Video edited by Jared Powell

Today we want to once again say, “Thank you, Church of God!” Because of your contribution to the TraffickLight initiative, lives are forever changed and the kingdom’s limits are reaching new bounds. As the final dollars came in this summer, we reached a total amount raised of over $715,000. This is amazing, and the impact is significant! Our ministry partners have the ability to expand their mission and see dreams realized because of your support and sacrifice. Check out the video to see a recap of this project. Continue reading

Pink Door: Joining God’s Mission of Reconciliation

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Photo: Room inside the Pink Door safe house.

By Pink Door staff

The last four months may have been a blur, but Pink Door is up and running. We welcomed our first recovery program participant on January 20, so these first weeks have been filled with doctor appointments, visits to German governmental offices, psych evaluations, language evaluations, teaching her how to shop, cook, clean, and use public transportation. It’s amazing how many life skills are never developed when someone is reduced to less-than-human status, abused, abandoned, and forgotten. It’s a miracle how these women blossom when given a chance at a new life. So, we’re off and running with perseverance the race marked out for us, never alone, often exhausted, but always encouraged and reminded daily of your sacrifice that has made Pink Door a reality—never taking for granted the great privilege it is to join God in his mission of reconciliation. Continue reading

CHOG TraffickLight: New Drop-in Center Extends Stripped Love’s Reach

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Photo: Stripped Love’s central Indiana outreach team.

By Carl Stagner

When Kimberly Majeski and a few friends from Madison Park Church of God first stepped foot onto the property of a strip club in Anderson, Indiana, they couldn’t have imagined the scope of what they were getting themselves into. Six years later, the impact of Stripped Love is reaching across the country, inspiring new ministries, and celebrating changed lives. This Church of God TraffickLight partner has now grown to the point of needing a place where women can find fellowship, refuge, resources, and counseling. In March, community and Church of God organizations and individuals came together to celebrate the grand opening of Stripped Love’s drop-in center in Anderson. Continue reading

Freedom Sunday Fuels Reclamation of Hope in Fight Against Trafficking

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Collage: South Creek Church of God (Kokomo, Indiana) Freedom Sunday observance.

By Carl Stagner

Though Valentine’s Day fell on a Sunday this year, chocolates and paper hearts were not the focus of thousands of congregations across North America. For the Church of God and several other faith groups, February 14, 2016, was about something bigger, something bolder. While the culture celebrated romantic love, God’s people celebrated God’s unconditional love for the least of these, including victims of human trafficking around the world. As ambassadors of God’s love, believers gathered to not only worship the Lord on Freedom Sunday, but also to raise awareness and funds for ministries entrenched in the fight for freedom. While Freedom Sunday stories continue to come in, initial reports reveal yet another groundswell of determination to reclaim what hell has stolen. Continue reading

Freedom Sunday 2016: Personal Reflections on Fighting Sex Trafficking

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By Kristen Bracy

I first learned about human trafficking in college, at a conference with the college ministry I was a part of, which was under the leadership of my amazing mentor and friend, Lori Taylor. I still vividly remember sitting on the floor in that conference session and feeling this incredible sense of purpose and mission come over me. Up to that point, I wanted my future to look like something different every day! I was constantly struggling with finding my place, my passion, and my purpose in God’s kingdom. But as I walked out of that session, I knew that I had just encountered God. I knew in that moment that I had just learned about something to which I could not turn a blind eye. I could not hear about such an incredible injustice in our world and simply walk away from it. My path was set. Continue reading

Church of God Makes Final Prep for Freedom Sunday, Feb. 14

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By Ann Brandon and Carl Stagner

On Sunday, February 14—Valentine’s Day—believers across the denominational spectrum will stand as one against the epidemic of modern slavery. This is because February 14 isn’t just Valentine’s Day this year; it’s also Freedom Sunday! Human trafficking has met its match if and when God’s church comes together against such widespread evil. Church of God Ministries has put a plethora of free resources at your fingertips to help your congregation observe Freedom Sunday in a meaningful way, including opportunities to support CHOG TraffickLight and reach our movement-wide million-dollar goal. One church that has embraced God’s call to fight against the injustice of trafficking is Church at the Crossing in Indianapolis. Continue reading

Jars for Justice: Missouri Church Champions Cause with Apple Butter

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By Carl Stagner

Sometimes the best way to champion a cause is also the sweetest. First Church of God in Farmington, Missouri, wanted to make a difference in the fight against human trafficking, but needed to find a way to avoid breaking the budget. Selling apple butter was their solution. With a little effort, First Church of God is proving that churches of all sizes can do something to advance freedom for the captives. Continue reading