“Women are not the problem; they are the solution.”
-Half the Sky
Around our Missional Mom circle this past week, human trafficking and the sex industry was the topic of the day. It seems it is the topic of every day these days.
And should be. That $57 BILLION dollars are spent every single year on the sex industry should bring the issue front and center.
We obviously have plenty of time and money to spend on women and girls.
And yet, women continue to be the most neglected, mistreated, and overlooked sector of our society. “The equivalent of five jumbo jets’ worth of women die in labor each day, but the issue is almost never covered,” observes Nicholas Kristof in Half the Sky. He continues, ““More girls were killed in the last 50 years, precisely because they were girls, than men killed in all the wars in the 20th century. More girls are killed in this routine gendercide in any one decade than people were slaughtered in all the genocides of the 20th century.”
Gospel for Asia recently began a campaign to raise up, train, and support national female missionaries, to reach out to the most-unreached portion of Asia’s population: women.
Women in Asia are the most likely to be victims of sex-trafficking and least likely to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. 50,000 female children are aborted every single month in South Asia. Females are the last to eat and the most likely to be illiterate. These women are among the poorest or the poor, living in most unreached parts of the world—”places that have yet to hear the Gospel. And many women cannot be approached by missionary men due to cultural customs, making their slim chance of hearing the Gospel even slimmer” (GFA). Illiterate, with no access to the gospel, unable to rise from their place of absolute poverty, likely to be sold into the sex-trade industry.
Wow. Sounds like women are a problem, right?
Actually, they’re the solution.
The exciting part is that now, more than ever, we’re seeing a movement of women helping women. Rather than being swallowed whole by this issue, they are overcoming evil with good. The powerful documentary, Volviendo, tells the stories of sex-trafficking survivors being rescued, healed, restored to wholeness, then returning to the streets in order to reach out and rescue more women. (If you live in the NW, consider contacting the film-makers for a free screening of the movie, and chance to hear them personally share about their experience, findings, and opportunities to join the cause.)
Gospel for Asia is investing in women missionaries in an exciting and effective strategy to reach these especially vulnerable women in Asia. Native female missionaries have many advantages over US missionaries, or even male native missionaries:
- She moves freely in areas restricted to outsiders or men and is accepted in good times and bad.
- She knows the cultural taboos instinctively.
- She has already mastered the language or a related dialect.
- She lives among the community, eating the same food, wearing the same clothes, and sharing the same cultural interests.
- She has a passion and burden to reach women in Asia. (From GFA)
One of the most common sentiments I hear from women (and men) is, “What can I do to help, from right where I am?” It’s hard to imagine making much of a difference in a situation halfway across the world. But there is one easy way:
Support a native female missionary.
Check out GFA’s information on female missionaries. For only $30/month (less than an iphone data plan!) you can support one of these women who have a unique advantage in overcoming evil with good. They can do what we can’t do.