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The following program contains sensitive content. Listener discretion is advised. Welcome to Lantern Rescue, a ministry program dedicated to bringing light into the darkness of human trafficking. It's time to light the way to freedom. This is Lantern Rescue. We tell the stories, we talk about rescues, and we empower you to do something about it.
William Wilberforce once said, Let it not be said I was silent when they needed me. This is Lantern Rescue. Hi guys, and welcome to Lantern Rescue. Today we have the joy of having Mark and TC with us, and they're going to be giving us some updates. So guys, we're so excited to have you here for the Lantern Rescue Podcast.
Who wants to start us out? Tell us about what's been going on around the world and what you guys have been into. Hey guys, thank you so much for listening, and for all those that download our podcast, I'm always so grateful and thankful to God and our listeners. We probably have just incredible numbers of people who listen to our podcast, so thankful for that. And today, both of us are back in the States, and I know TC has not been on a radio show in a while. So I'm glad that he and I are sitting here together, both as friends, as teammates in Lantern. And I just want to catch up with TC because I don't think our listeners have heard from him for a while, Whitney. TC, do you mind saying hello? Yeah, so number one, I hope Robbie as well, I hope he's not on a beach somewhere. That's probably what he's doing.
Getting those white feet in the sand. So yeah, the last time I was on, we actually had a crew in Ecuador doing some training, and that was a great crew, that was fun. Yeah, we got a crew there right now training, actually right now. Yeah, I talked to the other TC before he left. Yeah, that gets confusing.
Good deal. Yeah, so anyways, yeah, so we have been busy. I'm back in the office for the first time again in a while, and so even coming in, just seeing all the activity here at Lantern is almost overwhelming.
And I wasn't even in one of the meetings. But for my part, it's exciting. I mean, again, it's kind of a shame that we even have to do this kind of work, but we do. Man isn't very kind to mankind, and so we help those folks that need help. And we've been working super hard in Africa, really all over from the very southern tip almost to the top into Western Africa.
We're developing probably at least eight countries to be conservative. And working with great people, again, great people in those countries who care about their countries and the stuff going on there trying to stop evil and help the oppressed. And we've been able to come alongside those folks and plan and pre-plan and travel. The Lantern crew, I think five guys went on a trip here recently and all the way from Lesotho to, you know, clear up to almost Niger, working with folks and finding a way forward that actually matters and is sustainable. Let's talk about that sustainability piece really quickly, because I know that's something that, you know, so often we try to chat on is really the thing that makes Lantern different is the fact that we want something sustainable.
We don't want it to be, hey, things only happen when we're here, right? So building out that sustainable model in Africa, what does that I mean, does that look a little bit different than it does in other countries? And what are some of the barriers that that you face as well in that? So the sustainability piece actually starts in the office. It actually starts with the attitude of the organization to not just be in it to create a name.
I'm not throwing shade at anybody, but the attitude here is that we really do care about the victim in that country and their long term success and the long term success of their cops, of their prosecutors, of all of it. And so it actually starts before we even step foot in the country. But once we get there, finding the people who live there, work there, who are not corrupt, who actually want to do the work long term, maybe you're already doing the work, but in a very limited way. And so we bring the training and resources and things like that. And so in a sense, we're kind of fanning into flame people who are actually doing the work. I love that you made that point that it starts it starts here.
It starts with the people that are brought into Lantern and then it filters out. And when when when it is something that our hearts are already drawn to do to see that change in other people and other places. I mean, it's hard not to catch fire. I think it's also tenacity. Tenacity is that stickiness, that glueness, that I'm not giving up. And we're just so blessed to have people in our organization that have that tenacity. So when we talk about sustainability, it's almost like people think sometimes sustainability is that it's like a wheel.
You push it and it just keeps rolling. Right. That's not really the case. Like what we have is an organization. And then what we have in our people overseas is this tenacity to not give up, to never stop pushing the wheel, you know, so it's moving forward. And so when I think of our guys and girls and our task force leaders and our directors and people in those countries that we work with, they are just tenacious, almost to a fault sometimes. They are so focused on a case and they're going to go after it and do it.
That sometimes we're like, hey, we have to talk about something, you know, we need to we need to meet. But they just don't give up. You know, they're so tenacious. Even like right now, we've got a case involving 15 to 20 girls in the Caribbean. We've got a case in another case also in the Caribbean that's that's pretty, pretty heavy.
And these are cases that have been going for months. And we're just now seeing closure. We've done undercover. We've done all types of things. And it's all because of the tenacity of the team.
You know, I will give a very specific example and a very short term piece. So the last trip to Africa, there was kind of some moving parts to it. But in the very end, visas did not come through from one country.
And it was like it was unbelievable. So tenacity isn't tenacity is every day picking up picking up the hoe and getting to work every day and all the little details. And in this particular case, one of the guys literally drove passports to D.C. from here to get that stuff done, get them on a plane and then even literally in the air, stuff had to happen to get these guys in the country. So and the guys were relentless and they got the job done.
They met some very important people. So, yeah, tenacity is definitely a thing. I think it's interesting that you say that, you know, even mentioning those little pieces, so much of our of what you guys do and our listeners probably don't really know to the full extent. They'll never really understand probably to the full extent. I'm thankful you guys are able to give these little nuggets into that that that look at what really happens. But it's the little things like the passport. Right. That little bit of a change that you cannot account for.
You just don't know when things are going to work and when they're not. To be able to keep pushing through that and driving through those moments. You know, I mean, that that adds up. Right. It definitely adds up in our people on the ground and you guys pushing the people on the ground to keep going. So I think you guys inspire a lot of hope. And I'm going to I'm going to circle this around really quickly because I think a big piece of that is also the instilling the gospel in the people that you work with in these other countries, because it's one thing to focus on the hope that the world will give us. It lets us down frequently. Right. But when you focus on the hope in Christ, you know that no matter what you come up against, you have the ability to keep pushing forward.
So I think that's been such a vital part of what you guys do on the ground as well. You know, when God calls you to do something, you know that it will be done. You know, it's it's it's never about hitting speed bumps. Some people in their life, they hit a speed bump or they feel like a door is closing and they're like, oh, this must be God telling me not to do this.
None of us think that way. We know if God doesn't want us to do something, the door will slam like there's no other option. Right.
You're just going to run out until you can't do it. We we find cracked doors and push through all the time. Absolutely. Because, you know, I don't know, I don't know how that works in the spiritual world. I really don't completely say I just know that my God's big enough to, you know, slam a door. And so speed bumps and all that must be of the devil. So we just we push through those things. It's interesting.
The gospel is God with us, God in us via the cross. But even so, again, this trip that I talked about where these guys could barely get into the country, I was talking to the one guy, J.P., and he was just talking. He goes, you know, I was kind of like talking to God like, come on, God, like we're doing your work here.
What's the problem? I said, you know, God never said it was going to be easy. It clearly is not going to be easy since the garden. Right. However, as Mark said, he is with us. He is as he does call us to do the work of justice. So, you know, we grind.
The gospel is good for it to actually. That's right. And when we rely on what he's capable of and versus what we're capable of, that's when we're able to do a lot more. So are we close to a break? A couple more minutes. So if you guys want to update us, is there are there any operations that we can be updated on?
Before we even talk off first, I kind of won't because TC's not been on. You know, early on, we had a lot of podcasts we were able to do together and stuff. And now we're even just so busy. He is, TC has worked in South America, Caribbean with us. He's worked in all those places, Africa, Middle East, Asia Pacific. He's worked every part of the world with us. He's right now very focused for Landon, for us, working as our director of operations in the West Africa region.
And handling, you know, what's going on activity wise in about four different countries. So, you know, he's been busy. I do want to catch up with him personally.
Maybe you can share a little bit about your family. You know, we have a prayer quest that's in front of us. And maybe we can do that as we break. Absolutely. Come back around and we'll start there.
Yeah, that sounds great. Let's go ahead and head to a break and we'll take a minute to come back to that. I know our listeners are excited to be able to pray for us. You guys are great prayer warriors and we're so thankful that you have taken the time to be a part of what we're doing at Lantern Rescue.
So we'll head into a break, be back shortly with some updates on TC and maybe some operations that are coming as well. Lantern Rescue is a USA based organization that conducts international rescue operations for people suffering from human trafficking. Lantern specializes in sending former U.S. special operation law enforcement and intelligence personnel to partner with host nations and assist them in creating specialized units to combat ongoing security problems such as genocide, terrorism and human trafficking.
As a nonprofit charity, they offer services free of charge to their host nations. Human trafficking has grown into the second largest criminal activity in the world, reaching an estimated one hundred and fifty billion dollars in annual activity. Lantern Rescue has developed rapidly to combat trafficking. Lantern operates through a trained international network in order to rescue women and children from sex and labor slavery and facilitates holistic aftercare services.
They're gearing up for operations right now, and you can go to lanternrescue.org to see how you can support them financially. Thank you guys so much for listening in and joining Lantern Rescue's podcast today. We have Mark and TC with us, and we're going to be catching up a little bit on TC, what's been going on with you. And you're going to share a prayer request that's near and dear to you as well. So our listeners that are listening in, we hope that you'll join us in this request. And we're so thankful that you're here to listen in today.
Thank you. I'm going to stick with West Africa for a minute, as long as we're going to do prayer requests and then I'll go personal for a minute. So in constant conversations with our guy on the ground there who is very tenacious, you know, we had a pretty good conversation here about a week ago. And he's just, I don't know, re-explaining or explaining the development of things where he's working. And we are noticing or confirming maybe more and more that the trafficking where he is is organized. You know, that there are brokers, trafficking brokers from one country or another who are connected on the Internet, you know. And so he is fighting both the bigger organized, you know, trafficking rings, I guess you would call them. But they also these these organizers, you know, prey on families. And so there's familial trafficking as well. And so we were just talking about, you know, traffic, trafficked victims headed west are probably headed to sex trafficking.
Trafficked victims headed east into the bordering country are probably headed to make gravel, big rocks into little rocks. Just we're talking about kids. He actually rescued a four year old two weeks ago.
So, you know, those are all requests like those. That is stressful. You know, we got videos of some kids who got what they called corporal punishment and they were just hard to look at, you know, and he's investigating those things. So there it's a lot of stress on him.
His team is growing. I think they're up to 14. So there's those prayer requests there just for that, just for that country.
That's just one country. Can I ask for the four year old what what the stops were made? What side were they going? Were they going labor versus? So that was familial.
And so who knows? Right. Because the child is interdicted. That's good.
That's awesome. So not a victim in that sense. But the parents weren't together. And one parent just sent the kid packing for money. And, you know, so that's hard.
That's a hard day to day grind to be on. And he's got to figure all that out. Right. Where's that child going to go after that? Was the other parent complicit? You know, all of it is going to social services. So he's got a lot going on there.
Right. So a bit of a segue then for me personally, my wife has was diagnosed with stage three melanoma. And so, you know, she started her first treatment that was, you know, to be very transparent. Her mom died from cancer at almost my wife's same age.
So it's almost like the other shoe dropped. She's been almost waiting her whole life to hear that she had cancer. So that was hard, right?
That was kind of hard on the family. And right now we're in a we're in a good place. As far as we know, treatments are working. And as far as they can see on a scan, she's cancer free. But nonetheless, a little bit of stress there.
Absolutely. TC, when you call me and you told me about your wife's diagnosis and that was right before you had. I mean, we had a lot going on.
I mean, it was it was country hopping, you know, and it was difficult. And I remember you were like, this is the kind of guys we have. He was like, hey, look, I can do this.
I'm going to I can make this happen. And or if I can't look, it's OK. You guys don't have to keep employing me. See what's so easy.
Come on, bro. Like, you know, that's that's the heart of humility and also the transparency of how we use our funds. You know, and obviously I know our listener base and our donor base all know and appreciate the fact that, oh, no, we stick with our teammates through it all, you know, and and thankful to the team and even those who stepped in to to give you that time.
And so you could be with her in that first treatment. And I just am grateful for you. And, you know, we we can't run what we do and do what we do without the people that we have.
And from top to bottom. And so there is a loyal there's a loyalty, a faithfulness to each other that is unique. And later, you know, we have a we have a great atmosphere about that, I think. And I'm thankful to God because of that.
He's the one who keeps building that team. And we were even before this talking about some growth patterns and we were talking manpower. We're talking, oh, man, you know, it's going to take a lot in 2024 if some things come into play that we're praying about and hoping about.
But God continues to bless us so that we can grow. And I would just put a plug at this moment. Like if, you know, if you're former law enforcement, former special forces and you or or, you know, you've worked in foreign countries or governments, we absolutely would love to have you at least apply. And you do that at the Counter Human Trafficking Joint Task Force dot com. And that's where that goes into a pool of people that are reviewed. So, you know, if you have questions, you can reach out to us about that. But we'd like to direct you in a way that we know who you are. You know, we have a large database, but we need a lot of people in this fight. And on the same on the same mention there, you know, if you're listening in and you're not the tactical person, you're not former law enforcement, you're not.
And so you're trying to figure out where do you fit into this lantern, this lantern mold. Right. You're our prayer warriors. And we recognize the impact that our praying people have. We know this is spiritual war just as much as a physical war.
Right. So bringing you into that loop, you know, please always feel like you can reach out to us and share your prayers with us. You know, we're on social media where you can email us at light the way at lantern rescue dot org.
There's so many ways to connect with us and we want to be we want you in this fight with us. And the other thing is, you know, volunteering. There's volunteer opportunities that are arising. We've got events coming up. So, you know, if there's ever something you want to be a part of, please. It doesn't hurt to reach out and we want to hear from you. It reminds us that there are people aside from us in this fight. So how do we see how do we how do we pray for your your wife?
Tell us what the next way is to pray for her and stabs. And so the way the treatment works is you don't treat melanoma or they don't treat melanoma with chemo, which is a good thing. They use a thing called immunotherapy.
And I'm you know, there are probably a lot of people that are familiar with that. With that comes immunotherapy isn't cumulative. She has 11 more treatments, one per month, you know, so for the rest of this year and into next year. But they do increase the dosage of it. And so there's sometimes it'll attack different systems in the body. So the very specific prayer request would be that she would not have other damage to some of her.
You know, the endocrine system and things like that, as you know, the treatments continue. That would be the most you know, that and that the cancer is gone. I wonder if we could know how much time we have left. We got time. We have time before we pray for Lynn. TC, tell me how we can pray for you, because it's her fight, but it's also your fight.
So what are some things that we can pray specifically for you? Yeah, so I will say this. Lynn was probably as stressed out as I was that I could not go to Africa. But we just we just couldn't do it.
The timing was spot on. Perfectly not good. Right. But we're both like, well, maybe I could go for three days and fly me.
We just couldn't do it. But so we, you know, we care. Lynn and I care about all this work like everybody here does. And I will say, too, you know, Patrick, Lynn, Tony's a business guy. And he talks about how the most important thing is how a business treats their employees, not their customers. Because if you mistreat your employees, eventually it runs down the line.
It mistreats your customers. Right. And so I will put in a shameless plug for Landon's office and how we were treated. So, you know, that has been a major blessing and a stabilizing thing for our family. So I'm going to ask if you don't mind with me praying for his wife. And then as you pray, I want to encourage our listeners to do something. If you're listening to this, would you go to light the way at lanternrescue.org and send your prayer in for TC and his wife to read later?
And I don't I don't know, you know, how many of you can take the time to do that. But light the way at lanternrescue.org if you'll just type a prayer there. And I know some people may do it on Instagram and things, but send an email with a prayer so we can forward it to TC and his wife. I think that would just be great to do to know so many people are praying.
OK, absolutely. And some of you are some of our listeners are already in our prayer community. But if you're not aware, we do have a texting community now that we are able to send prayers to. Welcome.
Welcome to the game. We're able to receive and send prayer needs as they come out pretty instantly so that we can get a prayer warrior team on it. And I will just share that number with everybody really quickly.
It's 336-234-3302. And if you text truth, we'll know that you are prayer warrior community. But I will. I would love to lead us in that prayer. Lord, we just we come to you humbly knowing that you are sovereign and you are you're faithful, God, and you're faithful in the hard times, just as well as you are in the good Lord. So we know that that you stand you stand beside us in these moments of difficulty that arise.
God, you didn't you told us that there would be these moments. And that's the beauty of being able to call out to you and know that you hear us. And the fact that you've you've torn that veil for us through your son, Jesus Christ. Lord, we we just we stand in awe and thanksgiving, Lord. I bring TC and Lynn before you today, along with our prayer community joining us, Lord, that you would just touch her body and heal her. Lord, I pray I just pray that that that touch takes care of every cell that's not doing what it's supposed to do, that that you would just come into that place because you are the ultimate healer. You are the great physician, God, that you would come in here and that healing would begin and it would take place and just pour over her entire being, Lord.
And give her the tenacity that you're so good about giving us. Lord, continue to give her that tenacity to keep pushing through and being reminded of your goodness, God. And we pray over TC as well, Lord. You know, you have burdened his heart for the loss, the last and the least, Lord.
And he fights for that, God. And I just pray that you continue to sustain him and give him peace that you're working in Lynn and you're working in him, Lord, so that they don't have to walk stressfully in this situation, that they can walk victoriously because of the goodness of God. We just thank you for that, Lord.
And please continue to push our people through that are in these countries. And while TC is not able to be there, Lord, give them the strength and knowledge and wisdom they need through you and through your Holy Spirit to make those calls and decisions, God. We just thank you. Thank you for allowing us to come to your throne with these humble requests, Lord, and know that you are already ahead of them and that you are victorious in your works and faithful to see us through, God. We just thank you for the team you've given here at Lantern Rescue. We pray that you continue to go out before us to make a way to light up the darkness, Lord, and bring hope to the people that feel the absolute most hopeless, Lord.
We just thank you and praise you, God. Amen. Amen. Amen.
Well, thank you guys so much. I know that was kind of a quick run of updates. Got one minute. I got a couple really quick.
Sure. You know, while we were in this conversation, domestically, people don't know what all we do domestically because we've developed that fairly quickly to meet the demands and needs of certain investigations. And we are working, our director of domestic operations is working 29 cases. Wow. And that's Internet crimes against children cases. Lantern has the capacity to do that both digitally and then also jurisdiction because some of our guys are badged and that's a really good thing. You're badged.
TC is actually badged too here. So people sometimes don't realize our organization that we want to work with jurisdiction and authority. We're not just, you know, getting in the way.
We're actually leading the way. So we're going to do that with those 29 cases. And then also two children in a country, one of my director ops just texted me just now, two kids in one country were out and were sexually abused and raped by Americans. And those kids were just finished the interview. And the attorney general of that country asked us to please take that case. So that's a sexual abuse case. But I mean, I don't we don't know yet if there was any type of, you know, trafficking involved sales or commercial reality to it. We're going to find out. And if you're an American that wants to go to another country and do that to children, we're going to hunt you down. Yeah, I think that's the message that's coming out.
We just had we just had an American arrested with another case and we can't really talk about it. But just be aware. That's right. Absolutely.
There's no we're in that country where we are praying God enlightens us to find you. Yeah. Well, wow. Those are quick updates and those updates come all the time like that.
It's just it's nonstop. So thank you for inviting our community of prayers and to pray over those things. And for those two children, that's definitely something we're going to be prayerful of. Because no matter what, after the physical rescue, there's still a spiritual and emotional rescue that has to happen. And they're in care now. But, you know, it's a process of rescue.
It's a long process. Well, thank you guys so much for joining us, TC. Mark, thanks for being here and our listeners. Thanks for joining in on us as well. And thank you for being a part of what we're doing here. God bless.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-06 14:28:48 / 2023-05-06 14:40:22 / 12