Salvation Army sharing ‘hope and light’ at Sexpo

Sexpo visitors 'signatures' on the Salvation Army's digital petition campaign against sex trafficking.
Sexpo visitors ‘signatures’ on the Salvation Army’s digital petition campaign against sex trafficking.

Salvation Army (SA) representatives who spent their first day at the Sexpo sex and lifestyle expo in Johannesburg today (Thursday, September 26) were upbeat about  the start of their historic mission.

The SA has a prominent stand at Sexpo where they are raising awareness about the evil of sex trafficking.

“What a privilege to speak into people’s lives at Sexpo,” said Major Margaret Stafford, national coordinator of the SA Anti Human Trafficking Desk, during the start of her night shift at the SA stand.

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“We are not here to judge or to throw stones, we are here to speak into people’s lives and to share hope and light. We have the opportunity to speak about human trafficking and all it entails. We give out pamphlets with information,” she said.

SA representative and member of the Human Trafficking Board, Stacey Dlamini, who manned an earlier shift at the SA stand, tweeted earlier today: “Almost done of my shift. Great conversations, really positive response to us and our message. So grateful.”

“Gave away 2 Jesus Loves Porn Stars Bibles to a philosopher who kept us engaged for an hour. Lovin’this.” she said in an earlier tweet.

Stafford said that the SA’s advertising agency had eight girls in g-strings spelling out A – Z  in ‘human letters’ to draw attention to the SA’s digital petition campaign against human trafficking. Lots of people have been ‘signing’ the petition.

The SA will be at the event at the Nasrec Exhibition Centre until Sunday, September 29. You can follow their tweets throughout the event at #salvosexpo,



  1. Did the Salvation Army men feast their eyes on the sexy girls all round? What a disgrace! What fellowship is there between light and darkness?

    • Moira de Swardt

      John 8:1-11 shows that Jesus himself was not ashamed to spend time with prostitutes. (Presumably prostitutes are sexy girls). Following in His footsteps … although the stand was staffed with women, not men on the Saturday when I went past it several times.

  2. i agree- and girls in g-strings had to advertise this campaign!! so the Salvation Army condemns human trafficing, but not prostitution or the sex industry?

  3. Defend the Bible

    The ‘hire of a prostitute’ was not to be received as a contribution at Jehovah’s sanctuary (but it seems OK at the SA), because prostitutes were detestable in Jehovah’s sight.—De 23:18

  4. sis! i thought they were christians?

  5. Well, the S Army is a false religion, so this isn’t really suprising

    • The Salvation Army is well known for its proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Why do you feel that you can so boldly assert that they are a false religion?

      • Val unfortunately as an ex-officer I know that on senior level this is no longer the case. There are still officers out there proclaiming the gospel of Jesus. BUT on a higher level of seniority the focus has defnitely shifted. I was one who left because I could no longer reconcile my conscience with the focus on social interaction. We were taught that it is your neighbour that saves you, no longer Christ alone.

        • Moira de Swardt

          I am also an “ex-officer” and I believe that the social interaction of The Salvation Army is their very reason for existing. From the start they proclaimed the gospel to people in gin-palaces, brothels and other dens of iniquity.

  6. You have clearly all missed the point of this campaign. Human trafficking and sex slavery is rife in this country. The naked woman were used to create a typeface, or font, that people type their names to sign a petition against sex slavery. It is a coneptual way of using the bodies of sex slaves to make a statement against sex slavery. There is nothing sexy about woman bruised and chained together unless you are sick.This has got nothing to do with the Christian aspect of the Salvation Army. The reason why sex offenders and traffickers dont get caught is because these crimes do not get spoken about. Many people who saw the campaign said it was about time someone did a hard hitting campaign that actually intends on doing something about this epidemic. Goverment is very relaxed about this problem. So maybe instead of taking it apart, maybe look at this as a positive way forward.

    • “This has got nothing to do with the Christian aspect of the Salvation Army.” Yes the SA is busy moving away from their Christian roots- towards a social gospel of good works, forgetting their first love. Willam Booth would have turned in his grave.

      • Aa Peter, William and Catherine Booth, headed up the ‘Midnight Rescue Brigade’ in 1880-90. We just doing what we’ve been called to do.

    • Graeme you get paid to defend the Army. You are the officer at Goodwood Corps.

    • “This has got nothing to do with the Christian aspect of the Salvation Army” So its OK to divorce your Christianity when you feel like it? Christian on Sunday, do your own thing on Monday kinda?

  7. Well done, Salvation Army for carrying the presence of Christ to a place where religious people fear to go. Because you know Him you will be led by the Holy Spirit in how to represent Him to the many lost people there.

  8. amv do u think it wass the Holy Spirit leading the sa men at the stand to lust after prozzie’s flesh? and dont tell me for 1 moment that didnt happen stay men…

  9. I Thessalonians 5: 5 — Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. So stop hanging around with the god-rejecters.

  10. The temptation to fellowship with unbelievers is very strong and only God’s Word will give you the strength to get away and recognize that this type of behaviour is harmful and destructive to your spiritual walk and growth with God

    • I fellowshipped with an unbeliever today. Then he committed his life to the Lord. I have no doubt that the Salvation Army representatives at Sexpo will share the Gospel where the opportunities arise. They have been handing out Jesus Loves Porn Stars Bibles. These are the Gospel of John plus testimonies of people who were in the sex industry who got set free by Jesus. Let’s pray that people who receive these Bibles will encounter Jesus as they read them. There is a difference between hanging out with unbelievers because you enjoy the stuff they do and hanging out with unbelievers because you are on a mission for the Lord.

      • Is it also fine to go into brothels with the motive to evangelise?

        • Jenelle Durdle

          I know a female officer that goes to brothels and strip joints with cupcakes to pray with the women, there have been many victories. We are the salt and the light. If we don’t storm into the darkness in the name of Jesus people will perish.

  11. Andre I don’t agree with you. Eph 5:11 says “Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.” I believe Frontline Fellowship has the right approach where they protest OUTSIDE the sexpo centre and talk to others about Jesus. If you go in you ASSOCIATE yourself with the sin and degragation. This is the Laodecean sin of COMPROMISE. I would love to know how many people the sa led to the Lord?

  12. I am proud to be part of The Salvation Army & we are not afraid to go anywhere where the hope & love of Jesus needs to be shared. And yes we have been into brothels to share the gospel, prayed with prostitutes on the street corners & been to sexpo to take a stand against sex slavery. This is the kind of ministry jesus did – befriending sinners & showing them the unconditional love of god.

  13. Thanks. Everyone for your comments. We were mainly women (just one man) at the stand and we had the opportunity to speak into the very industry we rescue people out of. I am sad that “Christians” have been so condemning and “sinners” were so happy to see us. I want to tell you all that it was a huge privilege to be at sexpo and to speak into the lives of many, many people. I spoke to people that you would not find in Church buildings. I thank God for the opportunity.

    • I got saved throught the SA.50 years ago at the age of 8 Praise the name of Jesus

    • Margaret: If it was just Moses who was there how did Officer Keith Holmes’ name get onto the electronic board?

      • No to sure, he is my husband, at home as he is sick with cancer. I’m his wife and were on duty for the 4 days.

  14. Jesus was known for mixing with the publicans and sinners. Even prostitutes – but obviously his motive was to save their souls as is that of the SALVATION army – do u think they went there to get a cheap thrill? I don’t think so!

  15. Yes, this is why I love the Salvation Army. They’re not afraid to go where the greatest need is. They’re not afraid to stir up controversy if that is where the love of Christ needs to be shown. Jesus chose to eat with sinners, and stand up for those society deemed unworthy. I couldn’t think of a better place to spread the awareness of human trafficking. Keep up the great work!

  16. Shirley Jeffery

    As I understand,Jesus was criticized by the people of His day, for mixing with sinners. He reminded His critics that it was the sick that needed a doctor and that He came to save those who were lost in their sin. I think the SA was following His example. You know what He thought of the self righteous who hid themselves in ” the comfortable pews ” of their time and did nothing to win souls, but criticize those who rubbed shoulders with the people needing The Lord.

    • May we as Christians remember its not about us it about Jesus that went to the cross for mankind

    • Shirley the FF does much more than the SA to save souls- but do it the proper way- we stand OUTSIDE these dens of iniquity- we certainly do not sit back “in the comfortable pews”

    • Jesus had contact with sinners TO LEAD THEM TO REPENTANCE. Jesus did NOT mix with sinners to fight for a cause, however good, OTHER than let them be saved. But it seems like the SA faught for a cause, the same cause that other religions and the government also fight for; which was NOT to get the lost saved.

  17. I also feel I need to say that Moses (The only SA man with us at the stand)is a wonderful Christian man who I was blessed to serve with at the SA stand. He was a blessing to many and shared his testimony with so many people. My prayer is that the people who heard our story and those who asked us for prayer will be eternally blessed and reminded of the encounter with a group of strange Christians who moved into their world and were not contaminated by it. – A young man testified that he had given up porn, a stripper asked for prayer, a young man seeking for something at SEXPO asked us to pray for him and told us how he loved him mom for always praying for him. So many amazing stories!! You have to love a God who goes looking for the lost sheep in dark and dangerous places.

  18. Thank you all for comments. I was the only male that Margaret mentioned and I count it a joy and a privilege to have been part of the team that shared the light of Christ to the people that need it and that is exactly what Jesus did and I believe he was with us as we were there as ambassadors of his Kingdom and not as patrons.
    It will be interesting to see how many Christians will resign from from their jobs because their bosses are non believers ‘for what fellowship has darkness with light.’

    • there’s a difference Moses between working with unbelievers/ walking in the street with unbelievers etc. on the one hand, and actively associating with them and what they do; besides the SA made it clear that you were not at sexpo “to judge” but to stand against human trafficking. in other words your cause is gighting human trafficking, not the gospel. big difference. the sa’s problem is they try and serve two gods at the same time; if this were not so why is the sa so budy-buddy with wordly organizations? and you know what God said about the laodicean church. be warned sa.

      • Stephen my dear brother. Don’t be so rigid in your views that you miss the very heart of Jesus. He is deeply concerned about injustice and we as His hands and feet are called to be so too. As we engage with the lost and the broken where they are we open doors for opportunities to share the Good news of our Saviour and Lord Jesus Christ with them — immediately or later. As different members of the same body we have the privilege of co-labouring with an awesome God who is very creative in His methods. If God is leading you to share the Good news through different strategies, that is wonderful and you should obey Him.

        • Andre I hear what you say, but I don’t see Jesus booking a stall next to the money-changers in John 2:3-16 neither do I see sit on the Sanhedrin. Jesus has a caring heart, but He is also Holy.

          • And yet for all of that He still got accused of hanging out with the wrong types and of operating through the power of the devil! Bless you my brother. May we continue to do our best to follow Him with courage and with a clear conscience.

  19. Moira de Swardt

    As a former Salvation Army officer, I thought the stand (in both senses of that word) of The Salvation Army was great! The reality is that Christians are meant to be salt – and little piles of salt on the side of the plate (or on a side plate) don’t have quite the same effect that a little bit of salt in the food has.

  20. I believe that Christ message of love and hope was never meant to be confined to the selected few, we preach Christ… be it on a street corner with the hungry, in a house were children are seen but not heard, when a woman is beaten by the man she loved, in a dust bin where a new born’s cry’s are heard, in the class room where youths feel a need to fit in, on the drug lords lawns, in child headed homes, through the effects of alcohol abuse, and the lonely prison cells, at sexpo….Christ’s message is preached…I thank Jesus for the privilage of serving Him through The Salvation Army.

    • the problem Mpumi is- DID the sa preach Christ at sexpo? If yes how many got saved? or did they simply oppose human trafficking?

  21. The Salvation Army has never feared to take the gospel into any place – well done guys! I know that the girls you have recently helped rescue from hell in Gauteng would be cheering you on. If only one person is made aware of the fact that sex trafficking is so active in Gauteng, then the stand was worth it. Who knows what other results there will be from your witness.

  22. meng jou met die semels dan vreet die varke jou

  23. Well done to The Salvation Army Southern Africa. The sex industry is not rosy as the media make it to be, there are many people out there that are lost and hungry. If one person changes his attitude towards the sex industry (Abuse and Slavery), then it was a job well done. A small seed was planted in many people, let us see what happens.

  24. I’m so happy Jesus was willing to step into Samaria, a place he was not welcomed as a Jew, and he met the women at the well – and Jesus set her free!

  25. I commend the SA for going taking a stand at Sexpo. The Christian teachings that those who manned the stand received as members of TSA, gave them the courage to go into a place that would have been really uncomfortable for them. The belief (through much prayer and reflection I am sure) that this is where Jesus wanted and needed them to be made the message they had very powerful. Sharing the gospel isn’t about standing on a soapbox preaching or pushing the bible. It is about walking the teachings of the gospel. Reading about what happened on the stall, not only was the problem of human trafficking and the sex trade highlighted but the gospel WAS shared and heard. People asked the sA representatives to pray with them, the gospel of John was distributed, and the presence of Soldiers of God being there made people think about where they stand. William Booth (an evangelist) marched and preached where other ministers wouldn’t go. He believed (and rightly so) the believers were already in the house of God, it was those in the streets and pubs who needed to be reached. The SA has always had a ministry in the pubs, distributing the War cry and speaking to people in the pubs didn’t imply that those doing that ministry wanted to drink. I am glad that the SA found me,accepted me and loved me and through the brave ministry of the SA I found God. Well done Carin, margaret and your team.

  26. and William Booth and Jesus both had girls in g-strings to advertise their salvation LOL

  27. When the Salvation Army of old went into a place of sin (like EXPO in modern times) they were confrontational and adversarial. They often went with bugels playing. They got beaten up and often injured. Their Battle reports were based on those of the Victorian English Army. It was war. Did we see any of that at the 2013 SEXPO??? The Salvation Army sure has lost the plot. I should know I was an officer myself.

  28. Well done Salvation Army. Jesus came to heal the sick. I hope people who is fast to criticise is also fast to read their Bibles. Go check in the Bible to Jesus’s life and take note what HE had done! Good work Salvation Army you are a real inspiration to me.