Stop trafficking and exploitation

Helping to Stop Human Trafficking and the Exploitation of Children

A mere child herself, living in Madagascar, Rose had already married, given birth to and lost a child by the time she was 15. Upon discovering that she was pregnant just four months after her traditional wedding, Rose’s joy at the birth of her son quickly turned to sorrow when he died after just 10 days.

One agonizing month later, Rose’s in-laws demanded that she move out of their home and file for separation from their son. According to their belief system and the prevailing customs in their native Madagascar, if a baby dies before it is 1 month old, it doesn’t have a good mother.

Overwhelmed and despondent at having lost everything, Rose turned to Madagascar’s nightclub and discotheque scene where human trafficking is rampant. It was there that the Rev. Helivao Poget (hay-lē-vah-ō) found her. Rev. Helivao and her colleague listened to Rose’s story and prayed with her. Rose agreed to follow them to a safe place where she was ultimately able to turn her life around.

Rev. Helivao serves as director of ministry to marginalized people at the Church of Jesus Christ in Madagascar, one of Presbyterian World Mission’s global partners. Thanks to her efforts and dedication, now Rose is helping to lead others out of the scourge of human trafficking.

The call to end human trafficking in Madagascar and the exploitation of children everywhere is made possible, in part, by gifts to the Peace & Global Witness Offering, traditionally received on World Communion Sunday, which this year falls on Oct. 1.

This Offering is unique in that half of it is directed to peacemaking and global witness efforts at the national church level to address critical issues around the world, like human trafficking in Madagascar. Twenty-five percent is retained by congregations like ours for peace and reconciliation work, and 25% goes to mid councils for similar ministries on the regional level.

Rev. Helivao is not alone in her efforts to prevent children from being exploited. She says, “PC(USA) mission co-workers work with us by visiting our activities, sharing ideas and providing materials and support. “PC(USA) regional liaisons come to see our work in the field, regularly helping us to write our projects and advising us in many other ways.”

Through the Peace & Global Witness Offering, we can touch lives far beyond our individual reach. It reminds us that we are not alone, that the world is a very big place, but we are in this ministry of peace and global witness, together.

We are the peacemakers. When we all do a little, it adds up to a lot. Please give generously.


Let us pray ~

Lord Jesus, our good shepherd, as we declare that “you are with [us],” help us to remember that you are with all your children all around the world. Empower us to be with them as you are with us all. In Christ, through Christ and with Christ, we pray. Amen.

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