Human Trafficking

Reflection on the International Day of Human Trafficking and Diversity

Isaiah 6:1-8; I Corinthians 15:1-11; Luke 5:1-11

Today (Friday) is International Day of Human Trafficking. St. Josephine Bakhita, is the patron Saint of Human Trafficking Victims. She was  a Sudanese born woman who was kidnapped and sold into slavery, and for more than a decade she was tortured, raped, dehumanized, and traded from one person to another. Only when Italy outlawed human slavery was she freed.

Slavery persists in our today in the form of sex trafficking, forms of indentured servitude, dehumanizing migratory conditions, and so many other ways.

San Francisco is one of the major hubs of human trafficking of both boys and girls. Young men and girls have disappeared and not seen again in Golden Gate Park through the years, probably sold into sex trafficking, young men and girls are prostituted in the City on our streets and through the internet.  This happens not “out there” but here in our midst.

Our Scripture for Sunday calls us to faith in Christ. I ran into a friend I have known through the years yesterday, one I have not seen in a long while. I was buying some boxers, and as I was paying, from behind, I heard a voice saying, “I will pay for them, River.” One of the most compassionate acts and caring I have experienced in a long time. Her spiritual journey began in one of our mainline denominations, and now she is an atheist. It has been a long struggle.  And I understand where she is coming from, I jokingly said, “I am almost one sometimes”. The church is difficult, is many times not compassionate and narrow in its thinking. But I encounter Christ in the people I serve, and struggle along. Her journey is one of love, compassion, to all she meets. She shares the Divine in her life, just has come to another face of God.

What I have come to understand is that God has many faces, as an Atheist, Christian, Jew, Mormon etc.  and talks to each of us in different ways, and for me it is in Jesus of Nazareth. 

The Divine is expressed in love to all, and where love is so is God. We need in our journey to see God as the Divine, who tells us to love ourselves, and our neighbor. In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Fr. River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

www.temenos.org

415-305-2124

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