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Exclusive Interview

Journalist Diana Scimone recently spoke with Ambassador Luis CdeBaca, director of the U.S. State Department's Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking of Persons.

Diana Scimone: You recently started working at the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking of Persons. What's your vision as the new director?

Ambassador CdeBaca: One of the main things we're trying to do, speaking for myself, Secretary Hillary Clinton, and President Barack Obama, is to have a sustained anti-trafficking movement that harnesses all the voices of folks moved to do something about modern-day slavery-and then take that to the next level.

In January 2001, the work of the Clinton administration was continued and intensified by the Bush administration. That's one of the things we're hoping to continue-to harness that activity and commitment on the part of civil society. That can be human rights groups, mission groups, folks in the community, worker organizers, women's groups-all of those groups, each of which brings something to the table. At the end of the day, we're talking sustainability and intensity.

DS: How have things changed since you first got involved?

LCdB: I think about the first case I did in Florida in the mid 1990s as a civil rights prosecutor. To the degree that we even knew about this thing called human trafficking, we could have had a meeting of all the people who were involved in the fight back then and met in a minivan. Maybe a Volkswagen.

Today there is this [understanding] that folks in the non-government sector are just as important to the fight as any dedicated cop or prosecutor. It really has grown past those of us who started working on it [15 years ago]. We're in a good position now, that we're able to tap into the real energy coming not from people who've been working at this for a decade, but people who are just getting involved in the fight.

DS: What do you tell people who hear the horror stories and want to do something about it, but say, "I can't rescue a child from a brothel. What can I possibly do to help?"

LCdB: A lot of people sell themselves short. They say, "I'm not the attorney general, so I can't put together a task force in my state." You can do a lot more than you think. You can go to the AG or your mayor, and say, "Our state should be addressing the root causes of trafficking in our borders. We should be doing something to reduce the demand. We should be helping the newly arrived and vulnerable immigrants, or the street people who are written off as disposable. We not only want, but we demand that trafficking victims be treated professionally."

TIP Report 2009 That's when you start seeing shelters go up, when you start seeing victims being helped and put into places where they can receive help.

There are lots of different ways to get engaged on a grassroots level. Put together a house party and ask people to bring clothes they're no longer wearing so that women and men who are rescued can have something to wear for a job interview. When someone flees through a window, they don't have anything but the clothes the traffickers were making them wear. Having a sweater and a decent skirt can make a difference to them.

DS: When you and Secretary of State Clinton released department's annual Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP), you said you'd like to add a 4th "P" to the categories of fighting trafficking-partnership. [The other Ps are prosecution, protection, and prevention.] What was behind that suggestion?

LCdeB: A lot of countries see the TIP Report as the U.S. coming to them and saying how bad they are. We wanted to make it very clear by releasing the U.S. government self assessment at the same time that we have people still in bondage right here in the U.S. They're in our agricultural fields; they're in prostitution; they're in many places.

We realize we have to work in partnership with those around the world who are working to stop human trafficking. When President Obama was in Ghana recently, he gave a speech to the parliament and talked about trafficking heroes. He mentioned a journalist in that country who went undercover and helped bring down a trafficking ring.

While the president was in Ghana, I was in Nigeria meeting with cops who work to stop trafficking and with nuns who operate a shelter for trafficking victims. When they heard the president speak, even though he was talking about what was happening in a different country, they felt it was recognizing what they are doing and how hard they are working.

These are the trafficking heroes and we want to work in partnership with them and others who know their own affected populations. read more

Israel Video

Watch video footage from Benny Hinn's trip to Jerusalem in April 2009.


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Watch video footage from Perry Stone's trip to Jerusalem.

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Going to Be Caught Up ... Or Not

Watch Perry Stone discuss the three different viewpoints a believer can have about the rapture. Also share your vantage point in the comments section below.

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Hope from the House

On July 21, the House Education and Labor committee marked up HR 3221, the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2009, by a vote of 30-17 - the single largest investment in higher education in history that will significantly reduce loan debt burden for college graduates, according to The Institute for College Access & Success.

HR 3221 reinvigorates the Pell Grant program, which provides need-based aid to over 7 million current college students. The bill raises the Pell Grant maximum to $5,550 for students of the most modest means, and guarantees that the Pell Grant amount will increase thereafter on a yearly basis by the cost of living plus 1 percent.

It also cuts the interest rate on subsidized Stafford student loans, and invests in community college access programs that should help hundreds of thousands of students get to graduation.

These investments are paid for by cutting excessive lender subsidies from within the loan programs, and redirecting those funds toward higher education. read more

Healed From the Inside Out

Watch testimonies from young women healed of a myriad of addictions through the Mercy Ministries program in Nashville, Tenn. Also watch an interview by Joyce Meyer with the ministry's founder, Nancy Alcorn.

 

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The Miracles of 911


Watch video footage of Sept. 11 survivors discussing miraculous occurrences that happened on the ill-fated day eight years ago.

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20 Ways to Reach the Lost

How can you demonstrate God’s love in your community? Here are just a few things Jesus might do:
  • Pray fervently. If your church has an intercessory prayer group, participate in it. If not, start one, and encourage others to join you in interceding regularly for the lost in your city.
  • Be an active school parent. Prayer may not be allowed in the classroom, but the government can’t stop your light from shining in a school environment. Become friends with the principal, teachers and other parents.
  • Celebrate holidays in style. Gather neighbors, co-workers or relatives for Christmas or Easter. Then tell the old, old story of Jesus’ birth or resurrection in a brand-new way. read more

A Testimony of Healing From Abortion

How do you live with the guilt and shame of taking the lives of four of your children by legal abortion? Only through the blood and healing of Jesus Christ.

Within the next three months after my last abortion, I tried to take my life twice by overdosing on drugs. Friends and family knew nothing except that I had returned to the drugs and was once again out of control. The truth was that I hated myself and couldn't live with the memory of my decision. read more

Closing the Door on Abortion’s Guilt

You can’t just ignore the shame caused when you kill an unborn child. But you can find mercy and forgiveness.

My son David never had the chance to live because I made the choice to abort him in 1988. I was divorced with two children and was living a very promiscuous lifestyle. When I discovered I was pregnant I felt irritation and fear. To hide my sin of sex outside marriage, I chose to abort my child, even though I knew it was wrong.


Initially, I felt relief. The unwanted pregnancy was taken care of. I didn't tell anybody what I had done because I was too ashamed. In order to forget about it I stuffed down my feelings and didn't allow myself to think about it at all. read more

Top 5 Ways to 'Twitangelize'














Below is a list of the top five ways people are using twitter to 'Twitangelize' (evangelize on Twitter). Each post is written with less then 140 characters.

 

1.Comfort and encourage. Twunkies (Twitter junkies) post personal life struggles on their accounts. Reply with godly advice and wisdom.

2. Inspire. Send out links to inspirational stories highlighting the amazing things God is doing.

3. Share Your Testimony. As you post your daily activities be sure to include your, hopefully, godly reactions to life's struggles.

4. Pray. Offer to pray for a need.

5. Look for opportunities. Use tools such as PeopleBrowsr or TweetDeck to search words such as "atheist" and then jump into the dialogue. read more

Nominate Your Church

{jcomments on}Charisma is looking for healthy churches to feature in future issues of the magazine. We’d like to hear about how your church is thriving.

Please tell us your story in the comments section of our Web site below. read more

Live Recession-Proof

Christians don’t have to be casualties of the global recession. God has set principles in place to help His people live recession-proof. Watch a free tutorial from well-known Christian financial adviser Dave Ramsey and learn God’s keys to moving forward when the economy is standing still.

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Good News in Tough Times continued...

KENN RENNER The number of real estate agents in the Austin, Texas, area has shrunk 30 percent since last year, reflecting a decrease in average monthly home sales in 2008 of more than 50 percent, according to Realtor Kenn Renner. However, after seeing his sales double the first two months over the same period last year, the head of Renner Realty is aiming for a 50 to 65 percent increase in 2009-he hopes to reach $20 million. Symbolizing his optimism is the early March listing of an $800,000 home that sold in four days, prompting the seller to remark, "This is a God thing." "We surrender the whole business to Him," says Renner, a member of Glory House Christian Center. "With the power of prayer and our model of doing things-people are looking for that. They want encouragement." Though an independent agent for 25 years, Renner says last fall God directed him to become an affiliate of Keller Williams Realty. The Austin-based franchiser is now the nation's third-largest residential real estate firm. Renner liked the priorities of co-founder/chairman Gary Keller: God first, followed by family and then business. "As a stereotype, [business owners] put business first," Renner says. "It's proven that God first is more biblical." Though not a direct beneficiary of the federal stimulus bill, Renner says one provision of federal legislation adopted in February helped boost his business. The bill changed what had been a $7,500 no-interest loan to an $8,000 tax credit for first-time homebuyers. The provision didn't attract much attention from the news media-or Renner, until God told him to send out postcards to his tenants directing them to call him about federal housing assistance. "God said, ‘Get the word out,'" Renner recalls. "Nearly everybody who calls me has no idea about the $8,000 credit. Part of it is revealing what's already there. It's really being aware of the signs of the times. It's a pretty exciting time." Another step he took recently was adding a note to his Web site that for every home sale, Renner Realty donates $360 to Fullness in Christ Ministries, a Texas ministry founded by charismatic pastor Ras Robinson. That sum helps educate a child in Peru or the Philippines for a year. "It's one of the ways I'm letting people know this is a Christian business," Renner says.


DENNIS FEDORUK The current downturn is the third Dennis Fedoruk has weathered since he started The Brainy Baby Co. in 1995. However, thanks to increased direct-to-consumer products, his company's sales more than doubled the first two months of 2009. Although he doesn't expect that to continue, Fedoruk still forecasts an increase of 20 to 30 percent for the year. "There's a certain amount of an evergreen nature to our business," says the president of Brainy Baby, which produces videos, books and other products for toddlers. "It is children's education; we have 4.5 million new babies every year; and people will spend money on educational products for their children." Aside from such customary factors boosting sales, Fedoruk sees God's signature written all over a healthy 2009. He talks about the phone ringing and bringing unexpected business or word of distribution into another country. Brainy Baby items can now be found in some 200 nations through sales outlets or video downloads. Although the company's products are aimed at general markets, Brainy Baby is working on a faith-based line for release later this year. The new items will be one way the company can acknowledge the Father behind its prosperity. "God never fails," says Fedoruk, who attends a nondenominational, charismatic church in a suburb of Atlanta. "I believe He is behind everything we do. We never worry; we just practice Matthew 6:33 [‘But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you'] and go about God's business." Although he believes a stream of negative media reports has magnified the public's gloomy outlook, the executive says God has been teaching him to remain steady in today's recessionary environment. Acknowledging that he could constantly worry if he let his mind "go wild," Fedoruk says God has assured him that if he stays on the course He set without turning right or left, things will be all right. "If you're doing what God tells you to do, you're definitely beating a different drum," he says of bucking the trend. "As believers, we know that. We're not always beating the drum of popularity, but if you just stay focused on what you're doing, God will see you through." read more


Jerusalem Prayer Wall

The Word of God admonishes Christians in Psalm 122:6 to “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem (NKJV).” Join with believers around the world as we obey our biblical mandate to pray for Israel. Leave your prayer below.

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Breaking the Jewish Code

Breaking the Jewish Code

Learn 12 secrets that will transform your life, family, health, and finances

In Breaking the Jewish Code, Perry Stone reveals how anyone can apply these time-honored principles in their life to create wealth, live in health, build faith, raise successful children, and pass on generational blessings.

 

Purchase Breaking the Jewish Code here.

 

 

 

View Perry Stone's video about Breaking the Jewish Code.

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Topics include ...

  • Understanding the secret of the Hebrew covenant with God and why it works
  • The spiritual principles of health, wealth, and creating prosperity
  • Feasts, Sabbaths, and yearly celebrations—why success is also about family and enjoying life
  • How to leave a legacy and pass on the blessing to future generation

  • Twelve dynamic keys to success that Jewish people have known for 3,500 years

About Perry Stone

Perry Stone is an international evangelist and the founder of Voice of Evangelism, a ministry that strives to spread the gospel through revivals, television and other media. He is the author of numerous books, including Breaking the Jewish Code (Charisma House). read more

Does God Really Heal Today?

Does God Really Heal Today?

I have a friend who says, "God is always working on 10 levels at once; if you don't understand that, you will miss the other nine!" When healing doesn't come in the way or timing we would like, we should not despair and begin to believe that God no longer heals. As many famous theologians have attested, it is a grave error to define God only by one's experiences.


Henry Wright, author of A More Excellent Way, says, "If you don't believe God heals in the 21st century, then fine. For you, He won't!" Isaiah said it this way, "‘What sorrow awaits those who argue with their Creator. Does a clay pot argue with its maker? Does the clay dispute with the one who shapes it saying, "Stop, you're doing it wrong!" Does the pot exclaim, "How clumsy can you be?"'" (Is. 45:9, NLT). read more

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