Filmmaker // Designer

VIDEO: "IJM Chennai 2013: Year in Review"

Added on by Cole Slinker.

This video is a short retrospective on a few of the highlights from the Chennai team in 2013. All of the footage was shot in and around Chennai and I hope it gives you some sense of the beautiful texture of life here. I also hope it gives you some sense of the incredible things that the IJM team has been able to accomplish over the course of just one year. Of all this, the number that stands out most to me is 1,948: the number of people who have been rescued from slavery through the direct work of IJM Chennai in 2013.

I think it's worth noting that 1,948 isn't just an abstraction or a concept; it's individuals who many of the staff at IJM have come to know and care for and love. This is especially true for the team of Aftercare managers who will work with these individuals in a formal rehabilitation program for two full years.

So I guess what I'm saying is that I think this work is good work and it's happening, it's really happening!

On a personal note, one of the nicest surprises during my time in India has been the chance to do a few video projects. I'm excited to share some of that work with all of you. I hope you like it!


Beloved 'neath the western sky

Added on by Cole Slinker.

I went to a service on Sunday evening at St. Andrew’s Kirk, a Scottish Presbyterian church here in Chennai which I like and sometimes attend. The Kirk is a beautiful, towering white steeple with wooden benches that spread outward from the pulpit in a half-circle. The pews arc and stack, row after row, toward the wide-open windows and doors which welcome, on all sides, the breeze and the mosquitoes and the congregation alike. Like ripples in a holy pond.

Under the lacquered wooden frame that serves to hold the clear, bright bulbs and overhead fans, we sang a hymn. And it brought to mind all of you, springing forward and awaking and rolling onward into light.

The day Thou gavest, Lord, is ended,
The darkness falls at Thy behest;
To Thee our morning hymns ascended,
Thy praise shall sanctify our rest.

We thank Thee that Thy church, unsleeping,
While earth rolls onward into light,
Through all the world her watch is keeping,
And rests not now by day or night.

As o’er each continent and island
The dawn leads on another day,
The voice of prayer is never silent,
Nor dies the strain of praise away.

The sun that bids us rest is waking
Our brethren ’neath the western sky,
And hour by hour fresh lips are making
Thy wondrous doings heard on high.

So be it, Lord; Thy throne shall never,
Like earth’s proud empires, pass away:
Thy kingdom stands, and grows forever,
Till all Thy creatures own Thy sway.

heatin up

Added on by Cole Slinker.

I know it's been a while since I've updated the blog. I'm sorry about that, I've just been so busy!

For me, "busy" usually means filling-up my social calendar. But right now "busy" means I get to help tell the stories of people who've been rescued from bondage, and, in some small measure, I get to help shed light on the insane, man-made disaster that is slavery. This new busy feels pretty good.

If you're curious, Gary Haugen, founder of International Justice Mission, just published a book called The Locust Effect. I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but there are some pretty glowing reviews from some pretty impressive people.

Hey, speaking of impressive people...

The longer I'm here, the more in awe I am of the staff at IJM Chennai. No headline grabbing, no name-in-lights glory, just regular people. With a bum foot and a head cold, sweating in the brutal heat, running on no sleep—just regular people rescuing other regular people from slavery. But describing them, the words I reach for are anything but regular: they're superhuman, heroic, herculean, angels and saints. God bless their blood thumping hearts.

More updates coming soon (and maybe even a video). In the meantime, here's a picture of me at my desk. I haven't sat here all year but I have sat here all week and it's been ripe for laughs. Godspeed, ye weary pilgrims!