Thousands of children have been rescued from slavery thanks to the work of Set Free’s pastor partners. The ultimate goal for each rescued child is to reunite them with their families. But in some cases, this is simply not possible. For these children, they are cared for, educated, and taught of the love Christ has for them by our partner pastors. Here is the story of a young girl whose life was altered after experiencing Christ’s love for her. She now dedicates her life to telling others about Him.
After falling into extreme debt, Mirai’s father committed suicide. Mirai and her younger sister were left under the care of their mother who was unable to support them. Soon after, Mirai’s mother was approached by a mine agent who offered to pay Mirai’s mother 20,000 Rs. ($288) in exchange for Mirai and her sister. Mirai’s mother was told that the girls would be kept safe and healthy while they worked for a stipend. Mirai’s mother agreed. Mirai quickly realized that the circumstances told to her mother were not what she would experience. At 11 years old, Mirai experience unimaginable and inhuman suffering. Only a few days after arriving in the mine, Mirai was summoned by the supervisor and brutally sexually assaulted. She was told that if she did not report to the supervisor and comply every single day, she would be killed. Through these experiences Mirai developed an overwhelming fear of men that stayed with her after her rescue. She worked from sunrise to sunset each day with only one meal in the afternoon consisting of a piece of bread and pickle. She was not fed after finishing her work in the evening and was only given two liters of water per day. As Mirai learned the manual labor she was required to do under the teaching of an older women, she was warned to never let a supervisor see her tears or she would be beaten.
Our partner Pastor Praveen got word of this mine and what was happening within from a woman who worked in the mine. He gathered other pastors to perform a rescue mission. With the woman workers help, the news of a rescue was delivered to the children. One evening, the woman worker included a mild sedative in the agent’s food to put them all to sleep for 5-6 hours. She then used a phone given to her by our partner pastors to inform them that the agents were asleep, and the rescue could begin. 35 children and the woman worker were gathered together ready to run to parked vehicles that would drive them to safety. The woman that helped make this rescue possible was later employed by one of the homes for rescued children.
When Mirai was rescued, she was mentally and physically ill. She was immediately put under the constant care of a trained counselor. Mirai was also encouraged to participate in Bible studies. She began to learn about Jesus Christ and His messages explaining how He had given his life for all of our sins on the cross. After many months, Mirai began to heal from the torture she had endured. She became eager to learn more about the Bible. Six months after her rescue, Mirai’s mother was found. She had returned to her home village after losing her children, husband and home. When her mother laid eyes on Mirai they both wept. Her mother believes that it was because of Jesus that her daughter was brought home. Mirai fell at Pastor Praveen’s feet and began thanking him for rescuing her. He assured her that he was only doing what the Lord expected of him.
Since Mirai’s rescue, she has decided she does not wish to continue a formal education but wishes to spend her life preaching the gospel instead. She now visits the church daily to learn more about the Bible. She has even begun to tell others of Christ! She has seen Christ’s love for her and wishes to share that love with others. Mirai is now safe, healthy, and loved. Mirai is now free.
*Names have been changed for safety purposes.