Human trafficking is a modern-day form of slavery and millions of people around the world are subjected to it. The techniques used by traffickers and the forms in which trafficking is manifested are various, but what is common to them all is the exploitation of some people by other people. Those who are victimized include babies, children, teenagers, women and men.
Jesus taught that no one should live in physical or spiritual bondage. He said, ‘The Lord has sent me to announce freedom for prisoners, to give sight to the blind, to free everyone who suffers, and to say, ‘This is the year the Lord has chosen.’’ (Luke 4: 18 – 19). He was quoting Isaiah 61: 1 – 2. Later in Isaiah 61 are these words, ‘I, the Lord, love justice! But I hate robbery and injustice.’ (v. 8).
Consequently, Christians are called upon to work for the elimination of all forms of human trafficking. The Church Council of Frodsham Methodist Church have decided to support two charities carrying out important work in this area as the Church Charity for 2015. Both organisations also welcome our support as prayer partners.
Since its inception, The Salvation Army has sought to reduce the worldwide phenomenon of abuse of individuals or groups of people for personal gain, now defined by the United Nations as human trafficking. It has established places of refuge for victims, sought legal changes that would both prevent trafficking and punish those involved, and it has created alternatives for those vulnerable to trafficking. Through its constituent territories, corps, centres and individual members, The Salvation Army continues to plan and undertake culturally and biblically appropriate responses which will help to eliminate the development or continuation of any form of human trafficking.
The International Justice Mission is a global organisation of Christian professionals who aim to rescue people from slavery and restore them to safety and to build up justice systems to make slavery more difficult. It is the largest casework based Human Rights organisation working in the developing world. IJM lawyers, investigators and aftercare professionals work with local officials to ensure immediate victim rescue and aftercare, to prosecute perpetrators and to promote functioning public justice systems.
We will be welcoming Hannah Flint from IJM and Gladys Ljungholm from the Salvation Army to talk to us at morning services later in the year. If you would like to find out more about their work in the meantime you can have a look at their websites:
www.ijmuk.org and www.salvationarmy.org/ihq/antitrafficking
Written by the Minister & Members