SOUTHEAST ASIA – While Jim Caviezel’s new movie Sound of Freedom is bringing the issue of child sex trafficking to the forefront in America, CBN News Contributing Correspondent Chuck Holton traveled to Southeast Asia where one American woman is making a difference by rescuing girls from the sex trade.
Because of the sensitive nature of the work being done here, CBN News can’t disclose the exact location of what you are about to see.
Across Southeast Asia, a multi-billion dollar worldwide industry thrives in the shadows, preying upon the vulnerable and innocent. Underage prostitution is commonplace. And in the middle of this darkness, an unexpected source of light.
“I’m an ex-drug addict. Drug dealer. I used to cook meth and I lived in California, and I was a terrible person,” said a woman who is identified as Holly D. “I was really scandalous, very violent. And I let sin control me. And finally, God saved me when I was in prison.”
But her amazing story doesn’t end there. When Holly completed her sentence, she decided to go to Bible school.
“All of a sudden when I was getting ready to graduate, the Lord called me to Asia. And it was just like this instant love just poured through my heart,” Holly said.
Unsure of what God had for her, Holly bought a one-way ticket. And she found while walking the streets of her new home, her checkered past became an asset.
“From my background, it was easy to see the traffickers, and the Lord ended up putting on my heart to open a girls’ house just to open a safe place for women,” Holly explained.
Before long, she was saving girls from the sex trade.
“We have girls here who have been abused as young as eight years old – younger actually, five years old,” Holly said.
More than 40 women and girls now shelter in her home. All with horrific stories of abuse and redemption.
Nora was only 14 years old when she was grabbed off the street in her village nearby by a wealthy man who lived there. And he turned her into a sex slave for years. By the time she was 22 years old, she couldn’t take it anymore. And she said she would no longer obey him. And that’s when he brought her to a field and decided to murder her.
Holton talked to Nora about what happened next.
“He put acid first,” Nora told him.
“He put acid on you first?” Holton asked.
“Yeah. Then my eyes…hot,” she answered.
“Yeah, burned your eyes,” Holton said.
“So I could not see. Then he…,” Nora explained.
“He grabbed your hair?” Holton asked.
“Yeah, then he cut, cut,” she said.
“He cut your hand,” Holton said.
“Yeah. Here,” Nora showed Holton.
The man attacked her with a meat cleaver and then left her to die in the dark.
“So when I was laying out there in the field, I said, ‘If there is a God, please help me. Help your child.’ Yeah, because back then I was a staunch Buddhist, but I had heard about Jesus Christ before,” Nora explained.
“But as I was laying in that field, I said, “If there is a God, help your child, Jesus,'” she recalled.
“I heard a sound. The sound sounded like a beautiful song and it said, ‘Child, get up,’ Nora said.
“When I heard that voice. ‘Child, get up.’ I couldn’t get up because I had no power in me. There was blood all over and I couldn’t sit up, but I felt something that felt like a big hand go underneath my back and help lift me up,” she said.
Her family eventually found Nora and took her to the hospital. That’s where Holly found her. With a safe place to stay and help from donors, Nora eventually recovered. Now, she’s found peace with the trauma of her past, and can even be thankful for the tragedy that brought her to God.
“So, is it difficult to come back here? Is it hard for you to come here again?” Holton asked Nora.
“No! I freedom!” she exclaimed.
“You have freedom?” Holton asked her.
“I have freedom! I’m okay. Happy! Yeah,” she told him.
These girls aren’t just being saved from sexual slavery, they’re being invited into a new family.
“It’s not a program. You don’t get saved and go into a program,” Holly explained. “You get saved and you come into the family of God. We’re children of God.”