Willow Creek DuPage Tackles the Issue of Human Trafficking


“Trafficking people has to stop.  It’s the fastest growing crime behind weapons and drugs.” Madeline Albright

Human Trafficking is a growing problem not only in under-developed countries, but in our own area. Chicago is the third largest human trafficking hub in the US. Trafficking involves mainly women and children who are sold into prostitution and slave labor. It’s a lucrative business where pimps can make $2,000 a week for every girl in prostitution.

There are more slaves in our time than in any time in our history. Slave traders made $32 billion last year alone, and sold 2.2 million children into slavery. Steve Spear, pastor of Willow Dupage, encouraged his congregation see the rockumentary Call+Response narrated by musician Justin Dillon with comments from Madeline Albright, Dr. Cornel West, Nicolas Kristof, Julia Ormond and Ashley Judd.

Why Tackle Human Trafficking
“I am a soldier for this war.” Justin Dillon

Using undercover filming techniques, Call+Response exposes audiences to human trafficking. In Mumbai young people are kidnapped and locked in cages. Eighty percent of them are female and 50 percent of them are just children. With their mouths, hands, and feet taped and bound, they are gang raped and beaten into submission. Bribes keep the police at bay and often the police heighten the offenses by participating as customers.

There are 27 million slaves in the world today working as prostitutes or toiling in the coffee, cotton, and chocolate industries. In some countries, the males are forced to become soldiers, rapists and terrorists. Slaves live in squalid conditions with little food and water and are forced to work 12 or more hour days seven days a week. To prevent them from escaping, they are often chained together. Most will die as slaves.

Willow DuPage Made the “Call” and the Congregation is “Responding”
“I would like to thank WCCC Dupage as well as the film’s producer, Justin Dillon, who opened our eyes to this problem.” Bobbie Klimkowski, Willow DuPage member

“I think it all started when my husband and I saw the movie Taken. A week later I attended the WCA Leadership Conference and Christine Caine, a Human Rights Advocate, spoke on human trafficking. Next, I heard about Call+Response. Steve Spear, campus pastor at Willow DuPage, encouraged us to watch the film,” said Becky Brandvik, a member at Willow DuPage. The congregation is stepping into action to do something about the problem now and in the future.

Ways to Help
“I think it starts with changing the hearts of men and women and showing them they can have fulfillment through Christ and a life that is God-honoring,” said Becky. “I am a runner and would be thrilled to help organize a Willow-endorsed race to help raise awareness.” Just as the musicians in Call+Response pooled their talents to produce a film, we all have gifts we can use to help. There is nothing like the power of one to make a difference in this world.  We can all raise awareness, contact our elected officials, and buy products that do not use slave labor.

For more information, contact the Compassion and Justice Ministry at Willow Creek.

Category : Local Outreach

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