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Karolyn
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Posts: 7

As the newly elected Vice-Chair of Global Projects my first order of business was to familiarize myself with the challenges we face as an organization.

It just so happens that I'm a bit of a history buff when it comes to slavery.  I live in Windsor and Detroit where 40,000 - 60,000 slaves crossed to find their freedom.  Uncle Tom's Cabin is a short 45 minute drive from my house, along with other significant historic sites.

Yet, I am embarrassed to say that until last week I never really understood the amount of slavery that exists today.  I'm horrified.

I'm even more shocked that I know I am not alone.  It is not something that we talk about or quite frankly (care) about in North America.  I think of the lives lost in war to make slavery illegal. I think of the amount of men and women who fought to make sure it WOULD be illegal - and I ask myself...have we let them down?

There are so many people who believe that slavery became extinct at emancipation.  It's a naive presumption and a bit like assuming people will stop killing because murder is illegal.

The FACT is that slavery has been with humanity since its inception and it is something, like other atrocious sins, that we must fight against forever.  We must be diligent in our watch and be outraged at its existence.

Have we let down those that fought against slavery?
As of right now, the answer is a resounding yes. Today, 800,000 - 900,000 people a year are kidnapped and enslaved.

Consider this fact. In 1862, Abraham Lincoln freed 2, 678, 577 millions of slaves. According to Free the Slaves (FTS), an advocacy group linked with Anti-Slavery International, there were 27 million people (although some put the number as high as 200 million) who worked in virtual slavery in 2007, spread all over the world

Where do we begin?
As I read this staggering statistics I had to ask myself where do we begin?  What is our response to this? How do we mobilize and rescue?

I thought to myself - we need a NEW underground railroad - a group of individuals who would be willing to stand against this evil.  I thought of the 1800's and the role the church played in rescuing slaves through the Underground Railroad.

 
I realized that churches all over the world need to be shaken awake, educated and informed.  The weak amongst us MUST know that these places of worship are a place to seek help and refuge.

Admittedly, our churches have caused more pain than healing for many.  Yet it is a new day, a new era, and it is time for renewal and for change. 

As I set to work in 2009, I will be working to develop a program in conjunction with various organizations (including religious groups) to address this need and bring my Christian faith into a vibrant collaborative endeavour to help fight against this evil.
 
If you are interested in learning more, please start with an email.

Together we can make a world of difference!

--

Karolyn Hart
Vice-Chair Global Projects

[email protected]

519-564-5905

February 17, 2009 at 3:55 PM Flag Quote & Reply

PJH
Member
Posts: 1

Karolyn, thank you for sharing, I can sense the epiphany of the moment for you about the ravages of slavery and appreciate your heart for what is right and righteous. You vision of reaching out to the church community and bring about a renewal that will challenge and hopefully change attitudes and our ability to reach across the borders as a people committed to fighting evil in all its forms.

Until we see ourselves in the way our Maker does we will come to recognize how unique and powerful we can be in humanity and what a difference we can bring to the minds and spirt of all people.

 

Welcome aboard! Your skills and talents are a tremendous blessing to the organization.

February 17, 2009 at 11:34 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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