By Libby Hopkins

The Community Issues Council: Christian Citizenship in Action (CIC) is a Valrico-based organization that promotes Judeo-Christian values by educating and uniting the Church to be able to engage our community in the issues of the day. Terry Kemple founded the organization in 2006. His organization focuses on six primary areas. They are, standing up for religious liberty, defending the sanctity of life, protecting the traditional family, shielding children from indoctrination in the public schools, resisting the proliferation of the sex industry, and to push back the development of the gambling industry. “CIC’s primary method of operation is conducting small local gatherings of pastors,” Kemple said. “At the meetings, issues that could have an impact on our ability to live out our Christian faith are discussed and strategies to have an impact on the issues are developed.”

This past September, Kemple held a luncheon at the Maranatha Church of God in Ruskin to discuss the growing issue of sex trafficking. It has become the second fastest-growing criminal industry after drugs. It’s a $32 billion enterprise with 27 million affected globally. Tampa Bay is ranked number five in the country for sex trafficking and at one point was number one. Maria Silva, founder of Two Boards And Three Nails (www.2b3.org) and Geoff Rogers, founder of Ships of Tarshish (www.shipstv.org) were the guest speakers at the luncheon. Silva’s organization is a local non-profit that works with people who are trapped in the sex trade. Rogers is currently filming a documentary called, “Blind Eyes Opened-Sex Trafficking in The United States.”

Kemple feels strongly that the pornography industry feeds the sex trafficking industry and he hopes that his organization can combat it. “We focus on bringing together groups of pastors which immediately multiples the effect of our efforts as the pastors take the strategies to their congregations for follow up action,” Kemple said. To learn more about the Community Issues Council or to join the organization, visit www.communityissuescouncil.com or contact Kemple at 653-4822.

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Libby is a writer for The Osprey Observer/The Christian Voice. She started as an intern in 2009 and upon finishing her internship, she was asked to stay on as a permanent writer for both papers. Libby lives in Brandon with her two rescue dogs, Olive and Bogey.