Caldwell Leaders Issue a Challenge Grant

Date Posted: 8/8/2013

This spring, First UMC Caldwell put out a challenge grant of $20,000 to benefit the Sparrow House project being built in the Bryan, Tx area as a safe haven for human trafficking victims. Read who else has joined the campaign and what impact these funds are having.


Several churches in the West District are taking a strong lead as modern day abolitionists. Earlier this year, then-Pastor Todd Jordan of First UMC Caldwell led his congregation into a keen awareness of human trafficking injustices right in their own backyards in the Bryan-College Station area. The church hosted an educational orientation day that drew over 50 participants from miles in every direction, to hear Redeemed Ministries Executive Director Dennis Mark deliver the stunning statistics.

“We heard about the need and the plan to build a Sparrow House in our region to serve a wide area stretching across Dallas/Ft. Worth, Austin, San Antonio and Houston and First UMC Caldwell approved a $20,000 Challenge Grant to help make it a reality,” explains Todd. Shortly thereafter, Huntsville UMC added $10k and the West District topped it off with another $2,000, enabling us to contribute $32k to this worthy cause.”


Dennis shares the mission of Redeemed Ministries as often as possible. The organization is having great success at bringing Christ’s loving redemption and amazing liberation to those trapped and exploited within the commercial sex industry and/or by human trafficking for sexual exploitation or forced labor, through seeking, educating, identifying resources, and redeeming hearts. “We are excited to close on the property for the Sparrow House in mid August,” he reports. “We are still in the midst of fundraising and need $600,000 to build.”


Dennis Mark said, "Rev. Jordan's leadership and willingness to become a modern day abolitionist, shows how the body of Christ can impact change through meaningful engagement. Todd is a real champion for the victims and survivors of domestic sex trafficking, as well for Redeemed Ministries and our mission."


Sparrow’s House donations fund RM’s safe house operations. The Bryan/College Station 12-bed facility will offer housing and a 12-week program to those women certified by law enforcement as victims of sex trafficking. Donations will help cover building expenses as well as on going operational and aftercare expenses needed to care for survivors. Now that Todd is pastoring at Strawbridge UMC a few hours from the Bryan area, he will continue to lead in this arena of social injustice by educating his new congregation on the increasingly alarming statistics within this area of social injustice. “I want to continue to shine the light in this area of darkness,” notes Todd, “and feel good knowing the Strawbridge Missions Committee is looking into it for possible consideration as an area of future focus. If human trafficking is on the hearts of any other churches in our district or conference, this is a great place to channel your dollars and time!”