“Talitha Kum. Little girl, I say to you, rise up.”
Gospel of Mark (5:41)
Jesus addressed Jairus’s 12-year old daughter -believed to be dead- with these words. When Jesus took her hand, she immediately stood up and began to walk.
These two words send a powerful message and have been chosen as the name for Talitha Kum, the International Network Against Human Trafficking.
These words invite all members of Talitha Kum’s networks to rise up with courage and hope, to stand with victims and survivors of trafficking in persons, whose hands reach out to us, to promote a just world in which every human being can live in dignity and fullness, thus fulfilling Christ’s message:
“I have come so that they may have life, life in its fullness” (John 10:10).
Trafficking in persons is a complex and multidimensional phenomenon that affects tens of millions of individuals, as well as the rest of human society. The expression “Talitha Kum” is an invitation to all to call out the system that sustains human trafficking through our voice, our actions and our daily choices. We commit ourselves to denouncing the arrogance and violence of economic and financial power when it acts against the dignity of the person.
Talitha Kum’s work with victims and survivors of human trafficking is grounded in the belief that the dignity of the oppressed and exploited can be restored through sororal and fraternal relationships, marked by the presence of the Holy Spirit and the mysterious encounter with God. In a relationship between equals, Sisters walk together with victims along the path of healing, as they themselves regain a deep awareness of their inner value as individuals and members of their families and communities. In this manner, Talitha Kum addresses the systemic causes that leave people at risk of falling into the hands of trafficking networks, engaging families and local communities together with key stakeholders at the national and international level.
In line with this approach, those who adhere to the values of Talitha Kum are committed to being neighbors to those who suffer the serious consequences of trafficking in persons: men, women, children, and families. The actions of Talitha Kum are aimed at all those who are robbed of their dignity and deprived of liberty, regardless of their lifestyle, race, religion, economic or sexual orientation. The members of Talitha Kum living and bearing witness to Christian values, dialogue with and show respect for members of the different religious traditions and for non-believers.