Allouez church hosts prayer service for victims of human trafficking

ALLOUEZ — On Jan. 11, a candlelight prayer service for victims of human trafficking will be held at St. Matthew Church, 130 St. Matthews St. The two-hour service will begin at 6:30 p.m.

The month of January is globally known as the month of Awareness of Human Trafficking.  In the United States, President Donald Trump has proclaimed January as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, following a tradition that dates to 2010.

News reports indicate that human trafficking occurs in communities around the Diocese of Green Bay. Each year, Jan. 11 has been designated as National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, a time to pray for victims of human trafficking.

The Allouez service will include an “Introduction to Human Trafficking” by Sr. Celine Goessl, a Sister of Mercy of the Holy Cross; a discussion on human trafficking in northeastern Wisconsin by Sgt. Gregory Tilly, a member of the Brown County Sheriff Department, who will also share what local law authorities are doing to prevent it; a survivor’s story; and candlelight prayer service.

Those who attend are asked to wear blue as part of the Human Trafficking Blue Campaign. The participants will receive a blue tea candle as a memorial gift of the evening prayer.

There will also be groups with information tables at the church, as well as a prayer calendar. The Holy Cross Sisters from Merrill created the calendar for the days between Jan. 11 and Feb. 8, International Day of Prayer for Victims of Human Trafficking. Feb. 8 is also the feast day of St. Josephine Bakhita, a survivor of human sex trafficking. She was canonized in 2000.

For more information, e-mail [email protected] or call (715) 457-5649.