Contemplative Prayer Service for the feast day of Josephine Bakhita - Feb 8
Remembering St. Josephine Bakhita, all the Victims of Human trafficking and You
-by Jean McLoughlin, SSND
The School Sisters of Notre Dame 2017 document, LOVE GIVES EVERYTHING re-affirms our commitment to “educate, advocate and act in collaboration with others for the dignity of life ….” You are invited into this contemplative prayer, gazing at God speaking to St. Bakhita, men, women and children trapped in the slavery of human trafficking ,and to your very self through Zephaniah 3: 14- 20 .
Prayer to Holy Spirit: Dear Holy Spirit, lead us out of the darkness of this crime against humanity into the Light of freedom for all trapped in the slavery of human trafficking. Guide us as we join our brothers and sisters who are suffering. Through St. Josephine Bakhita’s intersession, may we grow in awareness, compassion and love for all these victims. We ask all in your name. Amen
Enter the scene and listen to God speak to St. Josephine Bakhita. The promise has been fulfilled in her. “Shout with Joy, O daughter Zion. Be glad and exult with all your heart. I have turned away your enemies. You have no further misfortune to fear.”
Reflect: What stirs in you as you observe this scene?
Listen now to God addressing persons who have been trafficked into one of many illicit massage businesses- the promise is in process. “Fear not. Be not discouraged. Your God is in your midst, a mighty savior. I will rejoice over you with gladness and renew you in my love. “
Reflect What are your feelings as you engage in this scene? What response do you want to make to God?
Rest here. Simply gaze as God speaks directly to you desiring to set you free from whatever enslaves you. You are the promise in process. “I will sing joyfully because of you as one sings at festivals. I will remove disaster from among you so that no one may recount your disgrace. At that time, I will bring you home. I will give you renown and praise among all peoples of the earth, when I bring about your restoration before your very eyes.”
Reflect - What stirs in your heart as you listen to your God?
Rest here. Silently, thank God for this visitation.
Closing prayer together: Loving God, awaken our hearts and deepen our commitment to work for a world where every person is free and able to live with dignity and freedom. We ask for conversion of heart for us, for traffickers, and we pray for strong laws that protect victims. Give us wisdom and courage so that together we find ways to freedom that is your gift to all people. Amen