Esther: We need to be strong. Mama and Papa would want us to.
Sarah: Yes, I know.
Esther: We’ve no other place to go. We need to eat. We need a place to sleep.
Sarah: I know. I’ll be strong, Esther. I promise.
Esther: Shhh. He’s coming!

A powerful story about two orphaned sisters, Holding Esther dramatizes the common experiences of vulnerable and traumatized children while offering hope and practical advice to caregivers. This world-class production, which includes the scene excerpted above, was RiverCross’s first audio-drama series and was designed to equip caregivers to bring healing to vulnerable children in their care. Caregivers listen to an episode, discuss it and then apply the principles learned.

The Production

RiverCross pulled together a team of experts in child development, human trafficking, trauma care and related fields to guide the development of the drama and assure the validity and effectiveness of its message. Next, a talented professional cast and crew scripted and recorded seven compelling episodes.

Among the artists were Cathy Sara, whose lengthy list of acting credits includes the celebrated PBS series Downton Abbey, and several from the production team for Focus in the Family’s Adventures in Odyssey, which has more than a million radio listeners daily.

The Experts

  • Christa Foster Crawford, J.D., core content developer
  • Dr. Charles Madinger, orality consultant
  • Dr. Lyn Westman, traumatized children consultant
  • Janette Pepall, orphan/vulnerable children consultant
  • Becky Jorgenson, child development consultant
  • Deanna Towns, child development consultant
  • Rose Muraguri, African culture consultant
  • Scott Wiley, Scripture consultant
  • Dr. Laila Risgallah, consultant about sexual exploitation
  • Dr. Derek Eggers, audio script consultant
  • Andrew Williams, consultant about street children

The Testing

Listen for Yourself

We invite you to sample the audio drama for yourself. Select one of the episodes below from our online ministry TWR360 and take just a few minutes to get immersed in the drama of Holding Esther. Let us caution you, however, that the subject matter may not be appropriate for children without adult supervision. The reality of life for many vulnerable children is disturbing and ugly, and RiverCross has committed itself to addressing these issues sensitively but faithfully.

Episode 1

Episode 2

Trouble loading the episodes? Visit our page on TWR360.