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Posts Tagged ‘Stand for Freedom’

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Passion 2017 got started as I spent my time at the resource booth selling shirts, CD’s, DVD’s and other merchandise. It was weird at first not being out in the seats listening to the worship music and sermon, but I knew God was using me so these college kids could be used by God. Ten years ago that was me out in those seats for the first time. Once things got underway, I was able to step out and listen during slow periods. I was blessed to have a great team of people to work with. The Passion Band got things started off with some new songs. Sean Curran introduced a new song called “Worthy of Your Name” which was powerful. Louie Giglio invited Dr. Charles Stanley to come up and open Passion with a prayer. Christine Caine spoke a powerful word on endurance. Crowder closed the session out and brought out special guest Carrie Underwood to sing with him on stage. It was an amazing night to kick off Passion 2017.

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Carrie Underwood and Crowder (Photo from Passion)

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DOOR HOLDER – One who takes great pleasure in opening the door for others to experience Jesus.

Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere: I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.

Psalms 84:10

Door Holders at Passion Conferences have been on the inside and have experienced God’s glory, and therefore consider it a privilege to stand on the outside and hold the doors for others to come and experience Jesus. In fact, they would rather hold the door than be anywhere else because their heartbeat has shifted away from themselves and is set on preparing the way for others to have a powerful experience with Jesus. 

I attended my first Passion conference ten years ago and it changed my life. I’ve been to quite a few since then and felt it was my time to give back to this movement that has shaped my life over the years. It was Passion’s twentieth anniversary and the last one in the Georgia Dome. I signed up to be a Door Holder (or volunteer) for my last conference.

I took a red eye flight to Atlanta and arrived on a cold and rainy morning. The good thing is that it will keep me awake for the day. We had an early morning Door Holder meeting in the Georgia World Congress Center. Atlanta has become a home away from home for me. I was assigned to the resource team and would be selling books, music and videos to the students here at Passion. My team lead was a pretty cool guy named Josh Sorensen. We set up and stocked our shelves in the Georgia Dome in preparation for the first session that evening. I enjoyed getting to know many of the people on my team who came from all over to help serve this big event.

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“Yes, LORD, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desire of our hearts.”   

Isaiah 26:8

Passion held its first conference in Austin, TX on January 1-4, 1997. That event drew around 2,000 students. Louie and Shelley Giglio are the founders of the Passion movement that seeks to see spiritual awakening on college campuses and to see many students to come to know Christ. Several national gatherings, OneDay events and tours would follow along with worship recordings and DVDs. I was introduced to Passion in 2007 (their 10 year anniversary) by the Pastor of my young adult group at that time. He flew over 30 of us to Atlanta, GA for their 4 day gathering at Philips Arena and the Georgia World Congress Center (over 22,000 students in attendance). I was newly single and just went on my first mission trip to Belize. I was pondering God’s will and direction for my life after my 9 year marriage ended. After participating in the “Do Something Now” campaign which raised $1.5 million dollars for global ministries on six continents and listening to Louie Giglio’s message about a party for the nations, I started to see some clarity in God’s calling for me. Passion ’07 absolutely change my life forever.

Fast forward to 2017 and it is now the 20th anniversary of the Passion conferences. In that time I have attended gatherings in 2010, 2013, 2015, a regional gathering in 2008 and a concert on the Take it All tour. Each one of these events were special to me and contributed to me following God’s will for my life. Passion 2013 in the Georgia Dome (over 60,000 students!) was life changing because of the launch of End It Movement  X – an awareness campaign that seeks to abolish modern-day slavery and sex trafficking. I am so incredibly thankful to the faithfulness of the Giglio’s and their staff for pouring into me through these amazing gatherings. I prayed about it and made the decision to attend one more gathering in the soon-to-be demolished Georgia Dome. This time I felt I needed to give back by being a door holder. Door holders are the hundreds of volunteers that serve on different teams such as community groups, logistics and registration. They are the glue that holds these Passion gatherings together. I’m not only excited to being a part of serving these students but also being a part of this 20 anniversary gathering of Passion.

“Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere;
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
than dwell in the tents of the wicked.” 

 Psalm 84:10

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Passion ’07

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Passion ’97

Above is a photo taken at the very first Passion gathering in 1997. It’s amazing to know that a gathering of 2,000 students would eventually grow to over 60,000 in a twenty year span. Below are some videos describing the heart behind the lyrics of the worship songs that will be sung at this year’s Passion gathering.

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END IT MOVEMENT

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Passion launched End it Movement at the end of Passion 2013. #EnditMovement is a movement to raise awareness of the 27 million people that are being held in slavery around the world. There are resources and facts on the site that are there to help educate us on the growing issue of modern-day slavery. It’s an opportunity for this generation to use their voices to fight this injustice through outlets like social media. It’s also a way to donate to the coalition partners that are out there in the world today rescuing those being held in bondage.

END IT MOVEMENT – USA TODAY AD

On February 1, End it Movement will be officially launching nationally with a full-page ad in the USA Today.

DISAPPEAR FOR A DAY ON SOCIAL MEDIA 

February 27

STAND FOR FREEDOM

International Justice Mission’s Stand for Freedom week. Sign up to stand for 27 hours for the 27 million slaves. This started with a group of passionate university students and has grown to a national anti-slavery movement.

SHINE A LIGHT ON SLAVERY DAY

April 9 is Shine a Light on Slavery day. Details of what this is all about will come out as the day approaches. Join in and sign the pledge at  www.enditmovement.com to be a part of this growing movement to make a difference in the world.

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“You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know” – William Wilberforce

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“Awareness is doing the work” – Gary Haugen

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Justice Panel

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Taking Notes

I was pretty stoked for this panel at Passion. This is the part where we learn about what God is doing in the world with all these amazing organizations that are standing up to injustice. Louie Giglio hosted a round-table discussion with several members from ministries out there that are actively raising awareness and rescuing people out of slavery and sex trafficking. The money that is given during Passion 2013 to the Freedom causes will help fund nineteen different organizations that have partnered with Passion.

First up was a mother from Houston, TX with three children who had her world rocked. She went on a van tour with Elijah Rising and saw brothels and other places where sex trafficking goes on in her own backyard. Elijah Rising is an organization that uses a holistic approach to training warriors to stand up for injustice with an emphasis on sex trafficking. After seeing this, she felt the call to stand up to this injustice and is actively involved with a ministry called As Our Own that rescues children out of slavery in India.

Gary Haugen of International Justice Mission – Greg reminded us that this is God’s fight, not ours. We need to pray and talk with Him first before we go out and do His work. If we try to take this evil on ourselves, we will be crushed. He also reminded us of Stand for Freedom on March 5-15, 2013. This is a movement that started on college campuses that is asking us to stand for 27 hours for the 27 million held in modern-day slavery.

Steve Martin of Love146 – It’s all about the Kingdom. All these wonderful organizations are just pieces of the Kingdom. We serve a Big God and there is no end to His resources. Love146 recently opened the Round Home in the Philippines – a safe haven for girls rescued out of sex trafficking where they receive therapy and are eventually reintegrated back into their local communities.

Brad Myles of Polaris Project – Only ten states have “safe harbor” laws (laws that protect people who are victims). We need to write the representatives of the states that don’t have this law. The National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) is a national, toll-free hotline, available to answer calls from anywhere in the country, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year.

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Justin Dillon of Slavery Footprint – How many slaves work for you? There is child and forced labor everywhere. We have to change the marketplace. It’s the supply chain that has enslaved more people than at any time in human history.  Self-discovery and knowledge is so you can raise awareness. Go to the website and find out how many slaves have worked to get you that t-shirt or the beans that make up your cup of joe.

Beth Redman of The A21 Campaign – The A21 Campaign prevents trafficking through awareness and education. Beth represented A21 and talked about a song that her husband Matt Redman wrote to raise awareness for the 27 million people being held in slavery.

Mary Frances Bowley of Wellspring Living – Mary talked about the The White Umbrella Campaign. The White Umbrella tells stories of survivors as well as those who came alongside to help them to recovery. You can also download a 40 Days of Prayer devotion book to pray the names of God over the survivors of sex trafficking.

Bryson Vogeltanz is in charge of the Freedom Causes at Passion. He makes sure that the money that is given at Passion gets to the organizations and that it is used wisely. John Richmond is a federal prosecutor for the United States Department of Justice. He has investigated and prosecuted numerous victim centered labor and sex trafficking cases throughout the United States. He mentioned that evil is real and it is powerful. But light is stronger than darkness.

Mark Wexler of Not for Sale – We need to wake up and the church needs to step up. Why are there 27 million in slavery? Why is human trafficking generating 32 billion in profits? The information is there. He talked about REBBL tonic. REBBL is a tea company started with a vision to end slavery in the Peruvian Amazon. The company employs freed slaves in the Amazon and reinvests proceeds into projects that combat human trafficking. It’s about the way you purchase. If you change the way you purchase, it will change the way they sell. Purchasers will eventually listen.

Leif Coorlim of The CNN Freedom Project – Leif is an editorial director for CNN Freedom Project and produced the documentary that covered Passion 2012 last year. He is currently putting together a film he filmed in the Philippines about sex trafficking called “The Fighters”. Here is the premise:

The Philippines has a problem. Whether for profit or pleasure, many of the young and poor in Asia’s largest English-speaking nation are being exploited in alarming numbers. It’s estimated more than 100,000 children work in the sex trade. For 20 years, Cecilia Flores-Oebanda has fought to protect children from ending up in brothels. And for 20 years, she’s fought an uphill battle to convince others to join her. Recently, Oebanda found new hope in the form of world-champion boxer, Manny Pacquiao. Oebanda believes if Pacquiao, who is also an elected congressman in the Philippines, speaks publicly about human trafficking, it could be the turning point in the battle. It may seem like a simple wish, but for those fighting for a better world, nothing in life comes easy.

72,000 NAMES FOR FREEDOM

Between Passion and International Justice Mission, 72,000 signatures for a sign-on letter were collected and delivered to the White House last year to urge them to end slavery. On the anniversary of Emancipation Proclamation, President Obama gave the longest speech since Abraham Lincoln on the fight to end modern-day slavery.

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END IT MOVEMENT

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