Few people have considered how communities and nations actually tolerate and encourage human trafficking, particularly as it relates to prostitution, Pope Francis said.
Modern forms of slavery “are far more widespread than previously imagined, even – to our scandal and shame – within the most prosperous of our societies,” the pope said on 9th February during a meeting with an international group of law enforcement and church workers.
“God’s cry to Cain, found in the first pages of the Bible – ‘Where is your brother?’ – challenges us to examine seriously the various forms of complicity by which society tolerates, and encourages, particularly with regard to the sex trade, the exploitation of vulnerable men, women and children,” the pope told the Santa Marta Group.
The Santa Marta Group is an anti-trafficking initiative organised by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales to bring together representatives of bishops’ conferences and top national and international law enforcement officials to promote cooperation, particularly in identifying victims of trafficking and caring for them once they are rescued.
Cardinal Vincent Nichols of Westminster, introducing the group to the pope, described human trafficking as “the darkest face of globalisation.”
Picture: Pope Francis. (CNS photo/Paul Haring).