In 2011 a group of abolitionists from around the country wanted to respond to the Congressional appointed National Human Trafficking Awareness Day (Jan. 11) in a meaningful way that would galvanize the faith community and empower people to stand in prayer to fight Human Trafficking in America. Following a special conference call with several of these leaders, Tomas Lares of “Florida Abolitionist”, and Dai Sup Han from “Prayer Surge NOW!”, were inspired to launch the first ever “National Weekend of Prayer to End Slavery and Trafficking”, in January of 2012. Since that time we have successfully partnered with organizations and denominations throughout the nation to educate the public, and inspire prayer that’s focused on ending Modern Day Slavery. Through the unified efforts of mobilizers throughout the country, we’ve been able to bring considerable exposure to this injustice, witnessing the power of prayer as incredible testimonies of prevention, rescue and restoration come forth. With the Annual Weekend Activities at the heart of who we are, the National Weekend of Prayer to End Slavery and Trafficking seeks to bring a year-round emphasis on the issues related to Human Trafficking. Through empowering existing organizations, providing resources and training, uniting the efforts of others in one collaborative grassroots movement, the National Weekend of Prayer to End Slavery and Trafficking is a non-stop effort to End Slavery in America. We are excited about this upcoming year of 2014, as we seek to bring even greater purpose and direction that ultimately leads us face to face with Jesus Christ and His throne of Justice.
Human trafficking, consisting of labor, sex, organ and infant trafficking is among the largest and fastest-growing criminal enterprises in the world. There are over 20 Million people enslaved in the world today. Labor trafficking dominates much of the world economy, accounting for about two-thirds of the Modern Day Slaves. Sex trafficking affects people of all races, and backgrounds. In America, the average age at which a girl is forced into prostitution is 12. Trafficking exists in every state in our nation, in every major city and many rural communities. In the last ten years, efforts to eliminate or reduce trafficking have intensified on both a federal and state level, yet trafficking continues to increase. It is morally intolerable that slavery still exists in America in the twenty-first century.
The groups and individuals we represent believe that we can best fight this scourge of evil through prayer and wisdom from God. It is fitting that people of faith exercise leadership in taking a stand against human trafficking, which we believe is the greatest human rights issue in the world today. Religious leaders in the 18th and 19th centuries (including William Wilberforce, John Wesley, Harriet Tubman, Katherine Bushnell and Frederick Douglass) led the fight to end slavery in their times, just as religious leaders have historically led the fight for civil rights in this country.
We are calling YOU – in your role as a leader among your peers – to consider for yourself the question posed in the Book of Esther: “For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for [those oppressed] will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to [your position of leadership] for such a time as this?” We are asking clergy, congregations, businesses and organizations in every community in our nation to join together in this nation-wide prayer initiative. We hope you will be led to participate, to put the power of prayer in action to help free modern day slaves and even to offer redemption to the traffickers.
We invite you to commit in joining with people of faith and organizations from around the country by taking the initiative in your local region to participate in National Weekend of Prayer to End Slavery and Trafficking.