WelCom February 2022
Josephine Bakhita, born in Darfur region of the Sudan around 1869, was kidnapped as a young child and sold into slavery. She was sold on many times, suffering severe physical abuse for about 12 years. She was finally freed by an Italian court order when she was about 20 years old. She became a Christian and eventually joined the Canossian Sisters in the north of Italy, where she lived as a religious sister for over 40 years. She died 8 February 1947, in Schio, Italy.
Pope John Paul II canonised Josephine Bakhita in 2000, and Pope Benedict spoke of her as an outstanding example of Christian hope in his encyclical Spe Salvi (Saved in Hope).
Pope Francis has made her the patron of the anti-slavery movement, and her feast day on 8 February is a day of prayer for all those who are subject to modern slavery.
In Aotearoa -New Zealand, as in many countries, there is a network of religious men and women called Talithkum, committed to raising awareness and action to end modern slavery.
So, we ask you St Josephine Bakhita to pray with us to rid the world of modern slavery, so that no children or adults be subjected to the inhumane treatment you suffered.
For more information about Talithakum and ending human trafficking, visit: www.talithakum.info