Sister Maria Luisa Puglisi, AASC, FORMER TALITHA KUM REGIONAL REPRESENTATIVE OF EUROPE
How many years have you been a member of the Talitha Kum International Coordinating Committee (TKICC)?
I began in 2019. I attended, in Rome, the Assembly that Talitha Kum organized for its tenth anniversary. Subsequently, I was proposed to be a coordinator of TKICC, representing the European continent.
What has it meant for you to represent Talitha Kum in Europe?
For me, it was a very interesting experience because, above all, I was able to share my work with other sisters and other international networks who also have the goal of fighting against human trafficking. Certainly, the European context is very complex: many countries with different languages, cultures, histories, social contexts, countries of origin-transit-destiny of many victims of trafficking, which means the need to adopt distinct approaches and working methodologies, even if we always talk about care, attention, accompaniment to people who have suffered a violation of fundamental rights. This variety of contexts was a great challenge for me, especially in the logic of understanding what moves around us, in the society of "everything flows, everything changes", as Heraclitus said. That pushes us to look deeply at the essential, that is sometimes invisible to the eyes, as we read in the book "The Little Prince"
What do you carry in your heart from these years of service in TKICC? What were the best moments?
My most vivid and strongest memory in terms of impact is linked to the Covid-19 pandemic and the many online meetings that we have continued to propose albeit being online, with the idea and objective of not leaving the people who were suffering alone, despite the physical distance. We thought it would make the situation worse if we didn't provide assistance during those times.
Then, when finally, after a year from the beginning of the pandemic and after the numerous lockdowns that followed, we were able to meet face to face, I was delighted. The occasion was the presentation, in Rome, of the official document of Talitha Kum International: the Call to Action. At that moment I felt lucky: I was able to meet many sisters and many people with whom to share important ideas, feeling part of the universality of the message we want to offer.
What message would you like to leave to the new TKICC team and the entire Talitha Kum network?
I would like to say, to the sisters of Talitha Kum International, to all those who collaborate with the network in different parts of the world and to the new TKICC team that, even if it might seem like a cliché, "unity is strength" and this l have experienced, serving the victims of human trafficking all these years. Networking, sharing, and communicating with each other makes us feel, in a world that experiences complexity, as one Church which cares about the same values and is committed against the injustices that threaten us every day.
April 4, 2023