Pope Francis sends a message to an online seminar on human trafficking, and calls this form of modern-day slavery a scourge against human dignity.
The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Argentina recently held an online seminar to mark the World Day Against Trafficking in Persons.
In a message sent by Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, Pope Francis described modern-day slavery as “a scourge that wounds the dignity of our weakest brothers and sisters.”
The Pope said our contemporary world is “sadly marked by a utilitarian perspective that views others according to the criteria of convenience and personal gain.”
This selfish point-of-view, he added, keeps others from experiencing the fullness of their unique and unrepeatable humanity.
Eradication of scourge
Given the dramatic situation of people being used for commercial gain, Pope Francis encouraged everyone in their “commitment to the total eradication of this scourge.”
He also expressed his support for “efforts to assist survivors and collaborate decisively in building paths that lead to the common good and the full realization of human life.”
The Pope concluded his message by blessing the seminar’s participants, and invoked the protection of Our Lady of Luján.
The seminar was held Thursday on the Zoom video conferencing platform under the title “Together Against Trafficking in Human Beings”.
The 600-odd participants represented various sectors working to fight the scourge of modern-day slavery. These included Church representatives, politicians, humanitarian workers, and officials from Argentina’s judiciary.
Event organisers expressed satisfaction that the Covid-19 pandemic did not force a cancellation of the seminar.
“The need to raise public awareness on this issue has grown,” they said, “since the current circumstances have created greater potential for vulnerability and favoured an uptick in the exploitation of people.”
With thanks to Vatican News, where this article first appeared.