Source - Paul heard Letitia speak at Movement Day in London - he was challenged as to how CNI Network and its local projects can best love and serve those working within lap-dancing bars and brothels. We have some fantastic work already going on such as gifts at Christmas, chaplaincy, free massages and even an Alpha Course at 4am on a Sunday morning. But there is always more we can do - and the challenge is how do we become intentional about reaching out? Some of the ladies will be trafficked here. Some will be struggling financially. Some with addictions, some with tragic histories, some who can't find employment anywhere else. How can we show and demonstrate that these ladies are loved and have a plan and purpose in life? How can we share with them of God who loves them, created them and thinks the world of them? How can we as teams of volunteers show compassion, understanding and have a listening ear?
These city women took a Bible into their local brothel. What happened next?
When the authorities in this city in Australia decided to allow a brothel, the Christians came out in protest. They organised petitions, marches, articles in local newspapers. Nothing worked. The brothel opened on schedule.
And then miracles began to happen.
Because instead of fighting it, the Christian women of Toowoomba began going into the brothel to bring them the message of God's love.
Before long, these women began leaving prostitution and starting new lives of their own accord – starting with the brothel manager, Nola.
The remarkable story of the change effected by the City Women of Toowoomba was told by Letitia Shelton at Movement Day in London, a gathering of Christian leaders from towns and cities throughout the UK, aimed at transformation though united action across denominational divisions.
Letitia said the aim of the campaign was to see their city free of porn.
The women's ministry goes into brothels and strip clubs.
She said: 'A few years ago our city decided it would be a good thing if our city had a brothel. Christians came together, we did petitions and a protest, but all to no avail. Still they opened a brothel.'
So the next thing they decided was to send in a team.
'We found a local woman, Ros, who had a heart for prostitutes. She started going into the brothel, building relationships, before it even opened. Then a woman called Jess took over. She built relationships to the point that last year, she bought a Bible for the brothel.
'She gave them the Bible. The girls started reading it. The manager, Nola, started asking questions. We could see this growing hunger in her life.'
In March this year, Letitia did a city breakfast and instead of inviting the local pastor's wife to speak, decided to invite Nola, the brothel manager. 'She came straight to breakfast in her work clothes. She said before you women draw down fire from heaven on me, I want to share my life with you.'
She spoke of her incredibly deprived background, her extraordinary struggle to survive, and how she had to go into prostitution just to find a way to earn a living.'
Letitia said: 'Something powerful happened in that room that morning. We said to Nola, you belong to us. Jesus wants you.
'She ended up giving her life to Jesus a couple of months after that. Then she got fired from the brothel – not for being a Christian, of another reason.'
A local Christian radio offered to employ her and she now works on the front desk. This year we've seen six women come out of the brothel,' said Letitia. For every woman that comes out, Letitia and her organisation try and raise $3,500 to help them transition into another job and to survive.
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