Pastoral Orientation on Human Trafficking


Pastoral Orientations on Human Trafficking is a new document produced by the Migrant and Refugee office of the Vatican. The Orientations are for use by Catholic dioceses, parishes and religious congregations, schools and universities, by Catholic and other organizations of civil society and by any groups willing to respond. Pope Francis’s insistent teaching on HT provides the foundation for the present Pastoral Orientations:

“I have always been distressed at the lot of those who are victims of various kinds of human trafficking. How I wish that all of us
would hear God’s cry, ‘Where is your brother?’ (Gen 4:9). Where is your brother or sister who is enslaved? Let us not pretend and look the other way. There is greater complicity than we think. This issue involves everyone!” (Pope Francis, Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, 24 November 2013, 211.)

The Pastoral Orientations draw also on the longstanding practical experience of many international Catholic NGOs working in the field and from the observations of representatives of Bishops’ Conferences. Two consultation session were held in 2018 with ACRATH participating in one of these sessions. While approved by the Holy Father, the Orientations do not pretend to exhaust the Church’s teaching on human trafficking; rather, they provide a series of key considerations that may be useful to Catholics and others in their pastoral ministry, in planning and practical engagement, in advocacy and dialogue.

Download a copy of the Pastoral Orientations on Human Trafficking here.

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