By Bp José Luis IMC
It all started few weeks’ ago. Members of the Sodality of St Anne asked to see me at short notice to present an idea: they wanted to organize a march against human trafficking in Mbabane.
The main idea was to have a prayer day and create awareness about human trafficking in our country supporting government efforts in this regard.
Through Caritas Swaziland, our diocese has always been interested in partnering with government and other forces in the country against the trafficking in persons. Together with the dimensions of awareness and prayer we would like to be of help to those who have been victims of this crime.
Being so, I immediately indicated that it should be a diocesan event and not just a local one (for Mater Dolorosa Parish, Mbabane) or for members of the sodality. The diocesan commission for Justice and Peace came on board too.
Being July 30 the “World Day against Trafficking in Persons”, it was suggested to have our event on August 5. Unfortunately I would not make it as I would be out of the country.
We were deeply grateful for the agreement and support we received from government. We were just asked to change the date to August 26 (and that made it possible for me to be there). We would leave from Mater Dolorosa Parish and march in town to “Prince of Wales” where the prayer day and speeches would be held.
Though cold and cloudy we had a great attendance from all walks of life: government, army, police, Christian churches… confirming that no one can address this issue alone and how much this affects us all.
We hope and pray to remain committed as a Church in the fight against this crime. We entrust this journey to the intercession of St Bakhita:
St Bakhita, a daughter of Africa,
who, yourself, suffered
as a victim of Human Trafficking
we honor and praise your name.
We humbly implore
that through your intercession
we may be able to persevere
in our battle to overcome this
terrible evil of human trafficking,
experienced by so many in Africa
and indeed throughout the world.
We know, St Bakhita,
that victims of human trafficking
are close to your heart.
We pray that they may feel
the warmth of your loving care
and the presence of our Lord
in their time of suffering and despair.
We pray especially for their rescue
so that they may once again
live in the freedom of the children of God
* * * * *
Click on the photo below
for photo album of the event