The 17th century was a turning point in US history as it was the time when the first few African slaves were brought to American shores. It was in 1619 that privateer The White Lion brought 20 African slaves to Virginia, which is considered by many to have been a ‘significant starting to point’ to slavery in America.
For two centuries, Africans had to endure hard labor and abuse from their owners. And it wasn’t until 1865 that the 13th Amendment was ratified, abolishing chattel slavery. But the injuries and trauma owners had brought on them have remained until their very last breath. (Read: CBCP Boosts Efforts Against Human Trafficking, Slavery)
So today, Juneteenth or Freedom Day, let us pray for slaves of all kinds— both former and current— that they may soon be freed from abuse and hard labor, and that they receive all human rights they were born with.
A Prayer to End Modern Slavery
Lord, You are a God who sets the captives free. Your Spirit searches restlessly for those in despair, that they may find the life you are calling them to.
We pray for those who are being trafficked and callously put to work in our region. On the cross, you were powerless and subject to the cruelty of others. Look with mercy on those who suffer this way.
May we, who are blinded by the shallow distractions of daily life, feel the fear of the cornered and be roused to action. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer from theclewerinitiative.org.