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Working to end trafficking is not just storming brothels and making documentaries. It's hard, hard work that taxes the body and the soul. Shoshon Tama-Sweet, executive director of the Oregon Center for Christian Voices, lives in the tension of being compelled by his belief in God's mission and overwhelmed by the enormity of the task before him.

Sex Trafficking: Beyond Storming Brothels

For Shoshon Tama-Sweet, working for the flourishing of his city comes at a great cost.
Rethinking the $3,000 Missions Trip

Rethinking the $3,000 Missions Trip

When I learned that kids in my city couldn't swim, I started to rethink how much I'd invested in overseas missions.
Furniture Fit for the Kingdom

Furniture Fit for the Kingdom

For Harrison Higgins, building beautiful furniture is not simply a steady job but a sacrament unto God.
Faith in a Fallen Empire

Faith in a Fallen Empire

Detroit's list of maladies is long. But some Christians' commitment to its renewal is longer.
'Daddy, Why Do People Steal from Us?'

'Daddy, Why Do People Steal from Us?'

How I answered the question would prove crucial to addressing racial divides in our D.C. neighborhood.

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Displaying 1–5 of 6 comments

CallMeJustice

September 03, 2012  8:19am

Annonymous, you just made me change my senior thesis to something much more plausible and inclusive. Thank you much, my dear friend.

Humanist

March 17, 2012  4:04pm

As admirable as Shoshon's efforts are, Anonymous deftly shines the spotlight on an important factor undermining much of the work Christians undertake with the best of intentions. If you view yourself as morally, ethically or even spritually above others doing similar work (as implied in, "if Christians won't do this work, who will?") you, almost by definition, lack the respect for others necessary to work with non-Christians.

Mary

November 08, 2011  11:08am

What I read and hear here is a man full of compassion, and burdened for the hurting. He makes one statement you jump on and yet you ignore the rest. He knows he is one organization working with a number of others. Read all of the articles including "Portland's Quiet Abolitionists" before jumping on one sentence. As Peter said, let's work together to better the lives of those who need our help and love. But yes, anonymous, Christians often are neglectful in reaching out to the hurting and that is why Shoshon is appealing to them to wake up. I applaud his honesty and boldness to step forward and get involved.

Hanah

November 02, 2011  4:04pm

Shoshon I just want to let me know that you have encouraged me today. In 15 minutes I have to leave to pick up a 13 year old foster girl from school. I didn't have to drive her to school yesterday because she ran away and was missing. This morning she told me about her experience after she and her 13 year old foster sister were picked up by a couple of young men. Like you, I sometimes feel overwhelmed by what is going on in this city. These girls so desperately want attention and they can be so naive about what it means to walk down 82nd Street at night. Lately I have been feeling like I am not making a difference, but you reminded me that even though it is emotionally draining, we are never given more than we can bear.

Peter

November 01, 2011  5:43pm

Anonymous, you are right. Christians often appear self-congratulatory, when what we are doing very often is following the lead of and building on the hard work and loving care of others, whether Christian or not; and we do this sometimes for the better, sometimes not. In either case, God has gone before, planting seeds. I do believe that the lead article in this series points to the fact that this work being done in Portland is not "Christian" in origin or in its ongoing efforts. Rather, it is the work of various agencies and individuals working together for what is clearly the common good.

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