Culver City has been an incredible place for our family over the past five years. We were blessed for two years to be foster parents to Tony, who is almost 7(!) and reunified with his mom last year. This past March, we officially became a family of three as we adopted our son Dean, who is such a joy and delight. We have found a home and a family at Newsong LA and our Culver City community is absolutely irreplaceable. God has richly blessed us here. Throughout the past year, God has made it clear that he is calling us to something new. In January, our family will be moving to South Asia for one year while Patrick serves as a legal fellow with International Justice Mission (IJM). Working with IJM, Patrick will be able to use his legal knowledge and expertise to bring freedom to people who, at this very moment, are living as slaves.
There are millions of people trapped in modern forms of slavery throughout South Asia – more than anywhere else in the world, according to some estimates. While laws exist to prevent such heinous injustices, they are rarely enforced on behalf of the poor and most vulnerable. IJM is working to change that, to bring violence and injustice into the light, to rescue victims of violence, bring criminals to justice, restore survivors and strengthen justice systems.
We are excited and honored to join the men and women who are tirelessly pursuing this work, following God’s command to “Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.” (Isaiah 1:17). We know that we were once slaves to sin but have been set free, not because of our performance or good behavior, but solely as a free, undeserved gift from God, given to us out of his goodness and loving kindness. It is because of this freedom that we are able to leave our lives in the U.S. and pursue justice for people created and desperately loved by the God we serve.
IJM estimates that there more than 35 million people living in slavery today, that is 5 million more people than the population of California. That number is mind-boggling. We are not naïve enough to believe that we, or even IJM, are up for the task of fighting this evil. Only the One who spoke the world into existence is capable of it’s healing. So we ask that you join us first and foremost in crying out to God. Please pray that God would give strength, hope and freedom to the children, women and men who are held against their will, forced into labor and sexually exploited for profit. Pray for the perpetrators, that God would convict their hearts and lead them to repentance. Pray for IJM, that God would bless their work and bring injustice into the light all over the world. And pray for our family as we make this huge transition. Specifically please pray for community once we’re there, our marriage, health and safety, and especially for Dean. Pray that we rely on God for the compassion, patience and strength we will need to live in a place as foreign to us (and as hot!) as Mumbai.
We are also responsible to raise our financial support for the year. We are estimating our cost for the year to be about $31,500. We would be honored if you would come alongside us for the year.
Due to the sensitive nature of Patrick’s work, we cannot post our specific location or updates online. If you would like to receive updates or prayer requests, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to keep in touch with as many of you as possible while we are abroad!