Pinoys join Pope’s prayer vs. human trafficking

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Pope Francis prays before a statue of Mary in St. Peter's Basilica on Nov. 30, 2013. (Photo: Lauren Cater/CNA)

MANILA, Oct. 3, 2015 – In line with the Holy Father’s intentions for October, some Catholic Filipinos have decided to include the end to human trafficking in their daily prayers, deploring how this crime disrespects man’s God-given dignity.

“This activity should be stopped. Humans are not for trade. It degrades us! It trespasses human dignity and the sanctity of life. It destroys what we are and who we are. It makes us nothing special anymore, no different from things and animals which can be traded. Let us always remember that we are not just mere creatures. We were made according to the image of God,” explained John Michael Tuazon, an Accenture accountant and college instructor from Meycauayan City, Bulacan, who converted to Catholicism.

For John Vincent Atanacio, a Convergys employee from Antipolo City and founder of the Marian group, Mediatrix’s Cause: Lay Devotees’ Initiative, praying for the end of human trafficking and similar atrocities is a duty of every Christian.

Global concern

“We really should pray for the eradication of human trafficking. This is truly a global concern and a grave reality. Sadly, many people become ‘willing victims’ of it due to poverty. They have nothing else to offer but their own bodies, either through sex or donating organs, for a chance to earn.”

He went on to denounce those who take advantage of the misery of their fellow humans, and who continue to violate their dignity as God’s children.

Meanwhile, religious educator Br. Nestor Limqueco of Arellano University and Santa Catalina College pointed out that justice and peace have always been an urgent call of the Church in order that each human person receives the treatment he deserves as one created in the image of God.

“We should collaborate and express solidarity with governments to protect every person’s welfare. Trafficking is a modern and contemporary capital sin against human dignity and worth. Let us all be one with the Church in promoting justice and peace, and strive for the protection of human dignity,” the consecrated layman stressed.

God’s image

Echoing Gen. 1:26-28, Tuazon exhorted the faithful to stop this inhumane deed, and to always uphold the gift of life and Creation, of which humans are a part.

Part of the verse reads: “So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”

Pope Francis’ universal prayer petition is: “That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.”

Moreover, his evangelization intention is for the “Mission in Asia”: “That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.” (Raymond A. Sebastián / CBCP News)

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