Call Me By My Name Part Two: Created Gainesville Uses “The Chosen” to Help Sex Trafficking Victims
North Central Florida sex trafficking survivors find hope, through a television show about the life and ministry of Christ.
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - It’s the number one highest crowd-funded media project of all time, “The Chosen.”
“He did big miracles at times but by in large he met people where they are at,” said Dallas Jenkins, the Creator of “The Chosen.“
“He was one on one, he was personal, he spoke to each person he did a miracle for and was always geared toward their specific need. And we show that in ‘The Chosen.’”
“The Chosen” is the first multi-season show about the life and ministry of Christ. The show is fast-growing, consistently ranked in the top 50 entertainment apps, with more than 300 million views.
“We had known about it from our churches, and our friends,” mentioned Brigit Shedd, the Administrative Director of Created Gainesville.
Created Gainesville holds weekly bible studies for sex trafficking survivors, including lessons, speakers, videos, and now, “The Chosen.”
Jenkins explained, “there is something uniquely profound about women who experienced trauma; especially sexually trauma, or have been caught up in some sort of situation or lifestyle, whether they chose it or not, that involved being dominated, or used, or disregarded, or seen for something other than who they truly are.”
Shedd mentioned, “I truly believe God has used it to show more and more people, the thousands of people who watch ‘The Chosen’ to understand that this is an issue, and it’s happening here, it’s happening in the United States, in Florida, in Gainesville, and it’s happening around them.”
Created Gainesville staff saw how Jesus was interacting with Mary Magdalene in the show.
“He is reaching her with such gentleness and care, but also with correction,” stated Shedd. “He didn’t want to leave her where she was.”
“I felt an honor to capture her appropriately,” said Jenkins. " Capture her struggle, her desperation, the oppression that she felt.”
There’s a quote in the show, “I was one way and now I’m completely different. And the thing that happened in between was him.” Jenkins explained, “that says everything about the gospel. And I think Mary Magdalene is the character in the show that exemplifies that more than anyone.” Jenkins added, “who you are now, versus who you were before you had that encounter, is radically different”
Created Gainesville hoped showing “The Chosen” would make an impact on the women they serve, and that’s exactly what happened.
Shedd said, “they might see themselves in that situation and understand how Jesus could affect their lives as well.” She added, “women resonated with the grace Jesus was showing; that he went to a woman who was rejected by society. Maybe a way that they couldn’t get just reading the Bible, but they actually had a visual to put with that.”
“That moment when Jesus calls her by name and claims that she is his, I think for some reason that went through the television and spoke directly to people,” exclaimed Jenkins. “The fact that this show could in some way speak to them and give them a sense of hope, what could be better than that?”
The show further enforced Created Gainesville’s core value of empowerment, and letting women know God is with them.
“As women go from a place of darkness that most of us could never understand, and stepping into the light and life that God has for them,” said Shedd.
“The Chosen” is getting ready to film season three early next year. They plan on making seven seasons.
To learn more about “The Chosen” and where to watch, click here.
To learn more about Created Gainesville, visit their website createdgainesville.com.
To watch Lisa’s full interview with Dallas Jenkins, click here.
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