Sunday, February 8, the feast day of St. Josephine Bakhita*, will be the first International Day of Prayer and Awareness Against Human Trafficking. Campus communities across the country are encouraged to organize their own local events. Sample prayer services and other resources are available from the Global Freedom Network. Through prayer and action, we can comfort and help empower our brothers and sisters who have suffered through this affront to human dignity. In the words of the Committee Chairman for Migration, Bishop Eusebio Elizondo, M.Sp.S.: “If just one person realizes from this day that they or someone they know is being trafficked, we will have made a difference.”
The Coalition of Catholic Organizations Against Human Trafficking (CCOAHT), convened by the USCCB, has crafted a set of “New Years’ Resolutions Against Human Trafficking,” a list of actions related to trafficking for the public to commit to as 2015 New Years’ resolutions. It’s not too late! We invite you to commit to the resolutions, share them with your colleagues and students, and use #SlavesNoMore on social media to raise awareness for the issue of human trafficking and what your agencies and communities are doing to respond.
*St. Josephine Bakhita was kidnapped as a child and sold into slavery in Sudan and Italy. Once Josephine was freed, she became a Canossian nun and dedicated her life to sharing her testament of deliverance from slavery and comforting the poor and suffering. She was declared a Saint in 2000.