Six Congregations Host Set Free3 min read

Over 20 million people are trapped in various forms of slavery throughout the world today. The scale and cruelty of this hidden crime is unimaginable. Six Lutheran churches are working together with Michigan Abolitionist Project (MAP) to educate, connect, inspire, and activate teens and adults, youth, families, and churches to be A Voice For Hope to end this evil in our day through the power of the Gospel of Jesus. The churches include: Immanuel, Macomb; St. Peter, Macomb; St. John, Rochester; Shepherd’s Gate, Shelby Twp; Faith, Troy; and Trinity, Utica.

“Immanuel [Macomb] is extremely excited to partner with MAP and many other churches to host this important event. We pray that the Set Free event is a catalyst for our community to bring God’s love, freedom, and justice to those bound in human trafficking,” said Associate Pastor Michael Heiden.

Together with MAP, Set Free promises to be a powerful, interactive event that brings awareness to prevent and end modern slavery through community engagement, training, and creative initiatives. The two-day, free event features live music, a unique shopping experience, creative arts exhibits, expert speakers, food, and the Set Free Café. MAP’s Freedom Marketplace provides opportunity for the community to learn more about slavery in our world and take action by shopping for ethically made prod­ucts. The creative arts exhibits are compelling media narratives that explore the issue of human trafficking through the use of artifacts and photography. Families can engage in age-appropriate interactive learning experiences, be educated and inspired by survivor testimonies and a distinguished panel discussion (parental discretion advised when choosing sessions), and enjoy ethically produced coffee and tea at the Set Free Café.

On Friday, October 16 (6 to 9 p.m.), the focus of the event is designed to empower teens and adults to be a force of good through God working in them. Miss Michigan will be the emcee. Two sex-trade survivors will tell how they were rescued by the power of God’s love. A dynamic concert will be led by a multi-church worship leaders’ band.

On Saturday, October 17 (9 a.m. to 2 p.m.), there will be a session that empowers youth and youth educators, as well as something for children, families, men, and women. The expert panel will inform parents, educators, youth, and church staff and leaders. Children will partake in interactive projects during the panel time. A special session geared exclusively toward men, titled “How Men Can Make a Difference,” helps men see the important role they play for ending the evil of human trafficking.

Participants will leave the event armed with information about how to:

  • prevent human trafficking and keep their families safe;
  • identify warning signs of trafficking activity and report them to the proper authorities;
  • offer help to victim support groups; and,
  • be A Voice For Hope in the community.

Plan now to attend the FREE event taking place October 16-17, 2015 at Immanuel Lutheran Church and School; 47120 Romeo Plank Rd; Macomb MI 48044. For more information, visit, call the church at 586.286.4231, or email Click here for a downloadable media kit and here for the promotional video.

About Michigan Abolitionist Project

MAP educates and creates awareness to prevent and end modern slavery through community engagement, training, and creative initiatives. At the heart of the Michigan Abolitionist Project is the passionate response of volunteer abolitionists. They are business owners, college students, pastors, artists, stay-at-home-moms and dads, writers, teachers, lawyers, construction workers, hair dressers, and more! People just like you are living proof that anyone can do something to prevent and help end human trafficking. Visit to learn more.

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About the Author

Rev. Jonathan Trinklein is the interim pastor at St. Paul Community, Pontiac and Director of Mission Mobilization at St. John, Rochester

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