Saturday the 22nd of April, the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa in Rome invited the Missionaries of Africa to join them to celebrate – ahead of schedule – the feast of Our Lady of Africa. The theme chosen for the celebration was – in the mood of time – the fight against human trafficking. And the usual homily was replaced by a short time of sharing in small informal groups around the question “Regarding human trafficking, what have I become more conscious of ?”
Here is the text of the bidding prayers of the day :
FIGHT AGAINST HUMAN TRAFFICKING
1. Cardinal Lavigerie said: “l am human and nothing of what is human is foreign to me!”
God our Father, help us that, through the strength of your love, we humans stop all abuse of power over other human beings. That the victims of trafficking may claim their rights and be freed from their chains.
2. Cardinal Lavigerie said: “I am human and injustice against others human beings revolts my heart!”
Lord Jesus, you came to free us, help us to break the chains of our life and those of our society; that we may fight the structures which oppress and diminish life.
3. Cardinal Lavigerie said: “I am human and cruelty against so many of my fellows inspires nothing but horror in me!”
Lord, we pray for the victims of all forms of slavery today: human trafficking for sex slavery, forced labour, child soldiers in war zones, the unjust commerce and the exploitation of natural resources in poor countries. We ask you to be help and strength to all those victims.
4. We pray for all those who govern that they may make laws in favour of human beings. That all states may abolish all forms of slavery and promote fraternal bonds among all peoples so that they can love their neighbours and look at all human beings as equal.
5. Lord, we thank you, because you protect all those committed in the fight against human trafﬁcking. That they may be joined by thousands of others who desire to commit themselves as well in that fight. Grant us and all our brothers and sisters, determination in the fight for dignity, justice and liberation of the oppressed.
Let us pray:
Lord, bring us together from all nations that we may live and proclaim the Good News of liberation that Jesus proclaimed. That we may join our strength to fight against human trafficking, humiliation and injustice in our world. That through the power of the Holy Spirit we may build a world where justice and solidarity reign.
And, after the mass, we had a very good fraternal time of aperitif and a delicious meal prepared with love and expertise by our sisters. Thank you to them for their wonderful welcoming spirit.
See also the beautiful “Way of the Cross” of the MSOLA Generalate’s Chapel.