The Burning Bush

The Burning Bush Tree 2

Every Christian is called to be an instrument of God, to bring about a change for the liberation and care of vulnerable men, women and children. With Burning Bush we are challenged to reflect and act on living a gospel of faith, justice and peace, to bring change for victims of human trafficking.

Burning Bush, an apostolate for anti-human trafficking draws its challenge from the Old Testament account of Exodus 3: 2,7-8. “Then the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey ... .”

The flaming shrub on Mount Horeb signals a God who is very much present and active in our lives. God hears and sees our distressing cries and laments, the cries and lamentations of vulnerable men, women and children. But where are we?  

Pope Francis in Evangelii Gaudium quotes from Genesis 4:9 ‘Where is your brother?’ “Where is your brother and sister whom you are killing each day in clandestine warehouses, in rings of prostitution, in children used for begging, in exploiting undocumented labour?”

Human trafficking is one of the oldest social sins that goes against the very humanity that God fell in love with. Scripture records in Genesis 37:27 the trafficking of Joseph as he is sold to a caravan of Ishmaelites for 20 shekels of silver and taken to Egypt. In the Exodus account and later in the Books of Exiles (the Slavery in Egypt and the Babylonian captivity) we reflect on the slavery, abduction and exploitation of the children of Israel. These and the Books of Joel 3:3 and Amos 2:6-7 provide us with encounters of social justice issues and how God’s concern for justice and protection of his people are emphasised

We are continually challenged with the eyes of faith to respond as well, to be in solidarity with the voiceless, the most vulnerable, the least, the lost and the last.

The Burning Bush invites a community of faith-based Christians, through BECs and parish groups, to make a stand against the trafficking and exploitation of victims, and offer protection and support to workers, migrants, women and children. Burning Bush will also invite local Catholics to study, reflect and discuss Catholic social teaching documents from Gaudium et spes to Rerum Novarum among others with the aim to better equip communities to understand the roles we play in bringing about social justice and fighting against human trafficking.

Let us not look the other way.