top of page


What's Happening


Updated: Jul 30, 2019

Hello Friends, It becomes clearer and clearer to me why we are being so strongly called to open our first Sanctuary village in Romania.  Our team there recently met with more than 20 anti-trafficking organizations at the European Freedom Network Conference in Italy. They were shocked to learn that Romanians are the most trafficked people in all of Europe — over 65 percent of survivors being rescued are from Romania and Moldova!

Beni and Rodica Lupe from our team in Romania

The reality is that the government of Romania is struggling to stem the tide. In fact, the country was just downgraded on the State Department’s Trafficking in Persons (TIP) watchlist. That designation means that while they are trying, the government is still failing to meet even the minimum standards for eliminating human trafficking. While this is terrible news for Romania, I think it opens an incredible opportunity for Uncaged. With our model and our resources, I believe we can assist the government in powerful ways. For instance, when we visited in January, a government official asked us to help with a nationwide trafficking awareness campaign.

I am in Italy right now, and the Lord keeps bringing victims right in front of my eyes. As we drove down the highway the other day, I saw several young ladies on the side of the highway. One was doubled over in just her undergarments and high heels, in desperate need. The other night at dinner, I unknowingly sat right across the street from a brothel. It was hard to eat as I watched the traffickers and johns circling these women. It was heart-breaking. This makes me desperate to get the first Sanctuary up and running. We want to create a place of peace and safety where survivors, like the young ladies I saw on the side of the highway, have access to everything they need — trauma therapy, spiritual care, medical attention, education, vocational training ... even things like music, art and physical therapies. We believe they can be healed and restored and reintegrated in to society where they will make a difference! An incredible opportunity is taking shape, and I have great news to share about first Sanctuary. But you will have to wait for the next eblast to hear more ...

Until then, thank you for your support and encouragement. Please continue to pray for us, and for the survivors.

308 views0 comments

Updated: Jul 30, 2019

We have been working closely with Beni and Rodica Lup in Romania, who have rescued dozens of survivors in the last few years. Last week, they were able to place the 6-year-old girl we wrote about in our last update in a safe home. Oceana is the precious little girl who was found abandoned under a cardboard box in the streets of Munich. We learned she’d been forced to beg on the streets for the last 2 years. She had been drugged and forbidden to talk to the point that she has difficulty speaking. Oceana is now safe and living with a Christian family back in her homeland.

Update from Beni and Rodica: “Last week we picked up little Oceana at the airport. As she met us, she seemed confused. Her eyes were big, and she was holding tightly to an airplane magazine and a little cookie. I asked her what she had in her hands and she was barely able to say, ‘a gift for you.’ I accepted these gifts on behalf of all of us involved in her rescue and restoration.  We took Oceana directly to the hospital and then to a dentist and counselors, where she was assessed, and her immediate needs were taken care of. A few things about Oceana: Like most little girls, Oceana loves ice cream and dolls. She likes the color red, and she has interest, and possible talent, in music. We played Christian music for her in the car, and she said, “This Jesus … I like.” At first, the music was in English, but then we played some Romanian songs. We could tell she liked them because she would say words from time to time. She repeated the word “Fericire,” which means “happiness.” Oceana is very afraid when someone tries to take a picture of her. This causes us to suspect that she was victim of child pornography. After the first night in her new home, she pointed to the window and said, “Angels and butterflies.” She says she saw angels and butterflies — and the angels were waving at her! There are times Oceana starts to smile, but often her little face turns sad. It must be the memories of the abuse and suffering. For such a little girl, she has already suffered so much. The family she is with is taking great care of her. But with limited resources and expertise, they are only able to take care of the basics.”

46 views0 comments

Updated: Jul 30, 2019

Oceana's Story: Margaretta, a social worker in Munich, Germany, was walking home from work when she noticed a girl huddled under a cardboard box. She stopped, and to her shock discovered little Oceana. After notifying the police, she was allowed to take this small, scared girl home. She is just 6 years old.  Over the past two weeks, Margaretta has bathed Oceana and taken care of some of her basic physical needs, including getting her a much-needed pair of glasses. As trust was built, Margaretta began to unravel a very sad story. It seems this little girl and her parents were trafficked from Romania about two years ago. The family was separated, and Oceana has no idea where her parents are. All the authorities know is that they are somewhere in the Schengen Area, a group of 26 countries in the EU that have no borders and no checkpoints.  Oceana was trafficked and forced to beg on the street corners of Munich. She was drugged so that she would lie still on a blanket, and for over a year she was not allowed to speak. Her trafficker did not want her to tell anyone where she was from and about her situation. As a result, Oceana has limited ability to speak and will need extensive speech therapy. Thankfully, Margaretta was able to reach Beni Lup, our contact in Romania. A church in Germany has agreed to purchase a plane ticket for Oceana to return to her home country. Margaretta will accompany her and place her into Beni’s custody. Beni has already identified a Christian family that is anxious to care for Oceana as if she was their own child. This same family recently cared for another trafficking survivor for almost two years. This young lady has now graduated from the program and has since married. A beautiful story! The family will provide Oceana with everything she needs to start her healing journey — a loving home, healthy  food, an education, speech therapy and legal assistance. 

I am overjoyed that little Oceana has found a place of safety — and a chance for restoration.

I dream of the day when we will help not just one or two, but thousands of survivors. We hope to soon welcome young women and girls like Oceana into a Sanctuary — a place of peace and safety where they can heal.They’ll receive intensive, trauma-informed therapy as well as spiritual care, medical attention, education and vocational training — all within a community of hope. I’m praying God makes a way for this to happen — first in Romania and then all over the world.  The Sanctuary model is the key to unlocking restoration in the lives of thousands of trafficking survivors. And you are the key to opening the door. Girls are out there waiting for us. They might be in a cage. They might be holed up in a dirty hotel room somewhere, or on the streets. But they are waiting. Please join me in saying to them, “We’re coming. God has not forgotten you. Please, hold on. We’re coming as fast as we can.”

30 views0 comments
bottom of page