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Weekly Intentions for Persons who are trafficked

(Note: The following blog was prepared by the Illinois Women Religious Against Human Trafficking (IWRAHT) organization, featuring Sister Barbara Sheehan, SP. This is the first of three blogs this month, in order to raise awareness during Human Trafficking Awareness Month).

“Each human being is a free person, and is destined to exist for the good of all. Any relationship that fails to respect this fundamental conviction constitutes a grave crime against humanity. There is now a compelling need to put an end to trafficking in human beings. …” (Pope Francis, Easter 2013).

Human trafficking for the purpose of sex or labor places human beings into slavery each year, taking away any form of human dignity they may have. “Using people for profit” slowly degrades their sense of self-worth. Trafficking has become a 150 billion dollar industry around the world. We ask you to reflect on “how does this happen? Do I contribute to this in any way? What can I do?”

Action: Get to know where trafficking is happening in your community. Be aware of unusual activity on your block. Are there homes where there are many people coming and going that are not familiar to you? Invite a speaker who is familiar with the issue to come and share their awareness with you.

Prayer: Gracious and loving Holy One. You breathe your breath of life into every person. This breath gives us the ability to look out at our world with a different set of “eyes,” the eyes of the soul and heart. May the cry of those who are suffering the indignity of being trafficked speak deeply to us and move us into action on their behalf. It is through our efforts that trafficked persons can know freedom once again.


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Sister Barbara Sheehan

Sister Barbara Sheehan, SP, a Sister of Providence since 1960, lives in Chicago and ministers as Executive Director/ACPE Supervisor of the Urban Clinical Pastoral Education Consortium, Inc. and as a spiritual director. She has extensive training not only in clinical pastoral supervision but also in care with those sexually abused, those challenged with mental illness and those suffering trauma. She has offered many workshops at regional, national and international conferences, is the author of Partner in Covenant: The Art of Spiritual Companionship and of numerous articles including one of her latest, Formation For Professional Practice: Addressing Social Hurts" in Reflective Practice: Formation and Supervision in Ministry, Vol. 34 2014.

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  1. S. Rita Clare Gerardot on January 7, 2019 at 7:08 am

    Barbara, thanks for sharing concerning this important justice issue. I have been saying a daily prayer for all persons being trafficked for several years. So many innocent people have suffered so grievously and my heart aches for them!

    S.Rita C;are

  2. Denise Wilkinson on January 9, 2019 at 10:45 am

    Thank you, Barbara. This has helped me be more aware and more prayerful for those who are trafficked. I am happy you are so faithful to this justice issue. S. Denise

  3. DIANN L NEU on January 9, 2019 at 4:14 pm

    Such an important issue. Thanks, Barbara, for challenging us to be aware for people who are trafficked.
    Diann Neu

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