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How Far We've Come

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue
The Truth Network Radio
September 23, 2023 12:00 pm

How Far We've Come

Lantern Rescue / Lantern Rescue

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September 23, 2023 12:00 pm

Mark discusses powerful stories of rescues around the world as he shares how far Lantern Rescue has come since the beginning. 

A warning: this program contains sensitive content. Listener discretion is advised.

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If you or someone you know has experienced exploitation call the National Human Trafficking Hotline (NHTH) at 1-888-373-7888.



This is Sam from the Masking Journey Podcast, and our goal with the podcast has helped you to try to find your way in this difficult world. Your chosen Truth Network Podcast is starting in just seconds.

Enjoy it, share it, but most of all, thank you for listening and choosing the Truth Podcast Network. 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. Well, I'm excited, I'll tell you, today on Lantern Rescue. We have Mark with us with some really amazing updates on what God's doing around the world, and just to kind of start off with in the sex trafficking area, right, Mark? Yeah, Robby, this is obviously, for those who listen to the podcast faithfully, or anybody who is funny, this is a podcast about primarily combating and countering the human trafficking criminality that's happening in the world. That's who we are, that's one of the core pillars of who Lantern Rescue is. Although we have other activities that deal with rescuing not just the exploited, but also rescuing the persecuted and also the displaced people. So when we started the show today, I think about how far we've come from where a few years ago Robby, you and I started the show, and our initial team, and the work that we were doing was incredible.

But now today, it's 100 fold, you know, because of God's favor and goodness of people and the ability of people to get behind us and let us work. I tell donors, or I tell groups that I speak to all the time, we're really not an organization, we're an operation, right? I mean, we have so much organization side of us as a typical nonprofit, we're so slim, so small, and our activities are so consumed with the operations we have in the world and where we need to be next. And the way we counter and combat human trafficking, what is designed and developed from day one is that we wanted to build, you know, sustainable programs in countries, we didn't want it just to be about some group because it's all these groups talk about, you know, being Americans go somewhere, do something, come back, you know, that's that's not effective for for very much sustainability program in a country. So our plan was to address this at a government level, the highest government level, build a task force, a team of people supplement fill the gaps in their system that everything from the undercover, the intelligence gathering all the way to the end of prosecution. And then even, you know, the aftercare process, plug in where we need to, you know, and that sometimes, honestly, it looks different per country, but it's also a lot of the same because, you know, the same activities have to happen. You have to identify a victim, you have to have the intelligence about what's occurring in that trafficking ring.

Then you have to build the case with the attorney general's office. You have to make sure everything's ready to do the operation, meaning the raid and the rescue. And then you have to make sure the arrests are going to be in place and that the prosecutors know what they're doing and judges are well versed on this issue. And then there's a place for the victim to go to receive the care that she or he needs.

And that's real quick overview. So we're doing that. What I want to say is that process is so difficult to lay out.

It takes it takes months and months, not years to establish. But in a lot of places in the world, thankfully, we have that happening and we have found a welcome home in certain governments around the world who who say we want to combat this. We know children are our future.

We know this criminality is is is the worst because it's it's destroying a life and it's reusing it even to the point of death. And so help us fight this. So I am involved personally in different levels of cases, you know, in times, but I can't be everywhere. TC can't be everywhere.

Alan, these people you've known through the podcast. We can't be everywhere at one time. So we've got a lot of people in places making this work happen. And so I get a lot of reports of cases that excite me because, one, a victim was rescued, somebody was arrested and the system work and it worked. Even, you know, Lantern has built a leadership and team and task force that from the states that deploy out to help these other task force. It works like our model is working.

Does that make sense, Robbie? Like we're not still trying to figure out how to do this. Like we actually successfully do this. Right. It's actually exciting, you know, from a listener standpoint and to see the the journey, because like you talk about, you know, that that's the right way to do it, because it's a sustainable model of, you know, setting up a system that will continue to work, whether Lantern works or not. Right.

Right. It really is. I could I could die in a gunfighter on a car wreck today and it's still going to work because we we have a working model. You know, I got a report yesterday and this is exciting because it's in a country that we did an assessment.

We've expanded into it and it just kind of the model was just introduced and it's still the early stages, but it's already working. So we had the disappearance of a young girl. She disappeared on September the 7th and basically her the father of the of the victim, he reported to the police that, hey, my daughter has disappeared. And this girl was going to call her Hannah. Hannah was age 11.

OK, wow. And she was thought to have moved with moved to a part of the city to play with some other children, but she did not return. And so obviously the parents immediately begin to look the father, the the family begins to look, you know, this isn't America. They don't have the strong law enforcement or layers of law enforcement that can immediately deploy.

And, you know, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the alerts that we have, they don't have that there. So they're looking and they're using their system. But after three days, they they look for other help. And by the time three days pass, also, they actually get contacted that a trafficker has her. And he's asking. He's also got her in a kidnap situation and that he is not going to let her go without money.

And so police are ill equipped to handle something like that in a third world country. We put one of our our teams on the ground. We verified the information, proof of life. We established contact and connection with the criminals. We began to work the situation and we have to be careful because this is the truth.

Listen to me. This is the truth. If their demands aren't met, it is nothing for that child to just be killed. Now, if that happened in America, that's big news, right? Right. In other countries, Robbie, it happens all the time, all the time. Their their ransom demands aren't met or their demands by certain time or money is not met. And so they simply kill the victim. This is routinely happens. OK. So we're trying to manage that.

And that's a lot right now. What I want to say is using our model, using our abilities to investigate our knowledge in this and the teams that we have here in America and the teams that we have in that country. We conducted and supported a locational raid. The girl was rescued. She's completely reunited with family. The suspect is arrested. I'm looking right now while I'm talking to you pictures of the child and pictures of the suspect in hand and being taken care of. You know, the child being taken care of and the criminal going off for future prosecution. So that is that I got chill bumps because that's a changed life. That girl potentially was looking at death.

He was looking at a long life of trafficking being sold to the places she didn't know where she was. Probably, you know, just at 11 years old and without without lantern and without our family of donors, without the prayer warriors, without the churches who support us, without the foundation partners that we have. And we got some incredible ones that we can. I wish we could say who they were.

But we have some incredible partners to without all of that, without the skill set of operators who devote their life to this, without the guys on the ground with our team who conducted the raid. You know, this girl would she wouldn't be alive today. And she is. And that's a real life, a real soul, real creation of God. You know, he he knows that child in and out.

And he he put together lantern to save her. And I'm so I'm just so thankful about that case. Oh, wow. Yeah.

The scary part is probably all the cases that are going on right now that we don't even know about. Yeah. So, you know, this is one of many that is everyday news for for us in lantern.

We get to celebrate every day. And I tell you what, in some cases are quick like that, like we did a quick response. We're able to investigate quickly and do it sometimes. So it takes months. And we've told you that on another show that can take eight, nine months, a year to build out who needs to be arrested.

And who's the full network that can take a long time? Sometimes it's a it's a it's a short, you know, short investigation and a quick interception and a rescue. But we as lantern, we get to celebrate every day. And so if you're one of those people who there are people who give us a certain amount and they get a they get a significant monthly report and they get to see all the numbers. And, man, I hate to even throw out numbers because sometimes we get desensitized to just what's behind every number.

But every single number is a little boy, a little girl, a real person whose life is completely changed and protected for the good. And, you know, so we have celebration parties all the time, Robbie. Oh, I know.

I mean, rightfully so, because like you say, every single one, I can't even imagine the celebration party that that father had when those that little girl was placed back in his arms. I tell you what, you know, you're great. You're a great partner to us, too, man. I mean, I'm going to send you a picture of this kid to you.

I look forward to celebrate with us. OK, I'll take it to you. You'll get that today. But it's awesome. I wish I wish I could just live the life. Honestly, at this point, you know, where I am in life, I would love to just see it all work and just spend my time traveling the world and seeing these kids whose lives have been rescued. Right.

I just want to I just want to see them all. But maybe one day we all get to do that in heaven and have that recognition. But I'm looking at a smiling face now knowing that God used lantern to to rescue her. Yeah, it's that's an absolute miracle. And so many, you know, from what, September 7th and and we're recording this on the 21st. So obviously, you know, it hasn't been but about a week and a half.

Yeah. And that's that's exciting stuff. We've got a lot of people pray for us before we go to break. We've got 20 females, two men, a 22 to 36. They you know, we've got 20 females in a in a facility that we've got to do something about, you know, and we've got another, you know, situation. Plus one hundred and fifty plus children potentially that investigation is being run right now. We've got a brothel that we know about a couple of victims, one of them very much in a in a bad in a bad situation. We've got a European that we're pursuing in the in the world. And I won't say where, but this guy, this guy's days are numbered. We pray and working together with, you know, obviously Interpol and homeland and people that are awesome to their jobs.

We're all trying to put him in jail. So a lot to pray for on the counter traffic side. Absolutely. And when we come back, we've got some updates on the recovery and the extraction team as well. So we'll be right back with a lot more and rescue. 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 is grown into the second largest criminal activity in the world, reaching an estimated one hundred and fifty billion dollars in annual activity. Lantern Rescue is 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 to see how you can support them financially. Welcome back to Lantern Rescue, and today we've got market and some updates and both on the human trafficking side and later on in this segment, we're going to be talking about the extraction team, right? Yeah, you know, continuing the show, we will just kind of jump from counter trafficking to, let me say this, somebody one time asked me, they said in the recovery and extraction side of work that we do, and that's finding people who are in harm's way, who are saying, hey, I am about to die at the hands of extremists or militant people in the country I live in. I'm being persecuted for my faith, you know, or I'm being oppressed, and somebody asked me about that work and asked me, they kind of framed it in a weird way. They were saying, so what is gospel centered or Christian about, you know, moving people like that? I thought, what is more Christian, what could possibly be more Christian than to rescue somebody who is being persecuted for their faith?

And in the process, potentially no greater love lay down his life for another, right? I was confused by that question. But, you know, so when we as an organization stay on this show, because this is a Christian show, that we are a Christian organization. Yeah, we work in, you know, supporting foreign agencies and law enforcement, and yes, we work in a justice system in those environments. But you have to know we are permeating every effort on every front with our Christian faith. You know, yeah, we train the police, we pray with police, we know our task force members. You know, we have within Lander, I don't think people know this, we have a missionary inside of our organization whose full time job or job is to love and take care of the units and police that we work with and their families and our task force members that we hire our undercover agents, their wives and children like we have a missionary just to take care of them, you know, because we want it's a mission field, you know, and we want them to know they're part of family. So we permeate everything we do with faith and even the aftercare process, making sure that children hear the gospel.

And then we come to recovering extraction, I mean, I just don't know, I don't know what more we could say to say we're moving the needle for the sake of the gospel by rescuing pastors and persecuted Christians in the world. And not everybody can do that. I understand that's a hard work.

It's a specialized thing. And there are some great organizations out there, you know, I commend the times that I have interacted with, you know, Voice of Martyrs, you know, I know you and Stu, you guys know them. And, you know, there are some great organizations out there that are supporting Christians and that are in harmful areas. But we're kind of specialized in the fact that we're really dialed in that we are about securing safe housing, moving, protecting them in a way that we know how to, you know, which is probably different than what other larger organizations that do this kind of work, or at least, you know, support Christians, persecuted Christians. We're more of that very active arm, right? Because in, now we're growing this, we constantly deploy people to build this network.

You know, we're in over 20 countries that a Christian who is being persecuted could make contact through our system. And I promise you, I can have somebody in the dark in the night with vehicles. We're working that situation.

We're going to snatch and grab them and we're going to move them somewhere. You know, that's taking years. And that's taking great collaboration with a network of people. And we have, you know, even now, you know, we've got somebody who's just working constantly through countries so that we can continue to establish, strengthen and build out that ability. That makes sense?

Oh, it really, really does. Because, you know, again, I've interviewed lots of folks with Voice of the Martyrs and talk to them, but they don't look at their situation from a military aspect where a lot of you guys, you know, you came out of special forces and different things like that. And so you have, you know, and even in your counter trafficking thing, you're looking at things from a law enforcement standpoint or from a military standpoint or even the government standpoint. Like it'd be rare for the Voice of the Martyrs to contact another government in some way, but you guys could do that kind of thing all the time.

And so as God has given you that favor that you talk about and all those connections, then it's really amazing to me how God leverages that ability to find those people that are right, needing that lantern. I don't know how to put it. Right. And right now, while we talk, we're finishing up a case of five, a family of five who are in harm's way. They're most likely not going to survive the next quarter.

They're not going to make it to the end of this year. And and we had to act on their behalf. And we are, you know, able to we're able to legally document those people so that they can move. And we have just enough network and push and power in parts of the world that we can get this done, you know, and and while we're doing that, we can keep them safe. We know how to tactically move people. We know how to, you know, do that. And so and that takes a lot of training.

We're always getting better at it because we have to use a lot of, you know, nationals and local people. So we're you know, we're just we're working hard on this family of five. I'll be glad when that one's done, because after that, we got a family of nine. And after the nine, we have.

Really, to be honest, we we got about I think I've said on the show, we six months ago, we had over 450 requests. Out of those, I have a desperate need to move. Immediately, immediately, I need to move six families immediately, like I'm just held back by money.

And I not it's not ability. And I really, really, really need to move those six families after those six. We're carving out around 40 families that are just as in the same level of threat.

But, you know, we have to we prayerfully decide as a team, you know, who is it we have to focus on next. So I don't I it's a shame the world's got to that. You know, I mean, I know it's always there's always been persecution of Christians.

I feel like though now and I believe, obviously, if you do look at the reports, the world reports put out by different organizations, it's obviously the persecution of Christians skyrocketed. And it is so high in so many places. So it's such a shame that this has become a necessary operation. Right. That I think that's the word is operation, because that that's the way that, you know, that God's essentially given you the favor to be able to do that. And I know you I know you well enough to know you stand amazed at how God put together these connections, how he's leveraging all these things. But, you know, I feel exactly the same way in that I'm sitting there looking at a picture of Hannah.

We talked about the first segment. And as I see, you know, here's a human face. I mean, here's a delightful image of God. Right.

That now has freedom and a life ahead of her at 11 years old. You just think, oh, my gosh, it was almost cut short. What an honor. What an unbelievable honor it is, Lord, that you would allow me to be take part in this interview of what you did right around the world. But then think even you listening right now.

I mean, you're getting to hear this, too. God's honoring you to show you what he's doing, because he's putting it on all our hearts to be praying for these resources, for these other families that desperately need his help. And he's honoring us with a chance to do that right now. Right. Amen. Amen. I had lunch with a pastor a few days ago, and it was a rare thing. And, you know, me, I'm not in America much to do that. But I was able to sit down with him and he was sharing.

He was, you know, we were talking about, you know, pro-life and and and for those who are pro-life or, you know, which hopefully is everybody listening. But you really want to understand you got to go to a place where babies are being boarded. You got to stand out front of it and see the lives going in and out.

You got to pray and be. And then, you know, that that front line view of it really impacts you. Right. And I wish I could take everybody to understand human trafficking into those dark places in the world in the middle of the night and say, this is what's happening. This is Sodom and Gomorrah on the lives of little kids. And this is this is horrible.

And can can you help us stop it? You know, and that pastor was clear. I mean, he he he was opening up and he was right. He was like, you know, once you face these things, we can't as Christians in America any longer, just like, well, that's OK. Hope it works out.

You know, here's my you know, you know, here's one little little bit of money or something. You know, we have to we have to do something about it, you know, and we there's a lot of things to pray about in the world. But I tell you, God cares about kids and he cares about the oppressed and he talks about it so much, you know, rescuing those who are going to slaughter. So we need Christians to care and to to get behind what we are doing and other great organizations to get behind what what's being done.

And we also got to care for our own. Hey, the day is coming, Robbie. The day is coming where an American Christian is going to really face off with prosecution. And, you know, there are those who have to have in my wife's family, you know, her father was arrested and thrown in prison for having a Christian school, thought that for seven years. And thank God he did. If he had not, there would not be homeschooling today.

He was one of those pivotal cases, you know. And so my family, my we know about persecution. But still, that's not at the level that these people are facing. Even thrown in jail in America is not the same as being told, hey, we're going to kill you. You know, you can't openly pray.

You can't open a Bible. You're going to not even show your face in certain markets. You know, you can't buy food, all those restrictions that they come into this country, you know, and it's just the way it's going. So we want to do all we can to help those in other places while we can. Yeah, that's so amazing. And again, we're so grateful to be partnering with the land and rescue dot o r g and, you know, just be in prayer for these operations. These families like, wow, these six families that that Mark talked about that, man, they need to be extracted right now. And he wouldn't be saying that unless the danger was imminent. Right. And be praying about those other four hundred. Right.

And and then all those other operations, essentially, that were happening in the human trafficking area. Again, we're so honored that you would listen today and join with us in this fight, which, you know, again, God is God is it's his battle. He's going to win it for sure. Thank you so much, Mark. Thank you, brother. Thanks, Robert, for doing the show with me. Of course. This is the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-10-07 11:43:39 / 2023-10-07 11:54:15 / 11

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