ESTHER MINISTRY UPDATE

Despite the pandemic, ESTHER Ministry has been working hard to live out our mission End Slavery, Trafficking Humans and Effect Recue: 

Humanitarian Outreach-This past year presented additional challenges due to COVID-19. Street Outreach organizations needed PPE (masks, hand sanitizers and gloves) and more hygiene kits in addition to clothing, comfort items and food gift cards. With stores closed and unable to get together to assemble Humanitarian Bags, we ordered these items online and used a member’s garage as a central distribution point.  In the same manner, we provided the Department of Child and Family Services (DCFS) with PPE, hygiene kits and over 250 outfits for CSEC (Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children) girls and boys. In total, we provided over 6000 items of PPE, hygiene kits, clothing and food.  

YESS 2021-ESTHER Ministry as a Core Team member of the Long Beach Human Trafficking Task Force collaborated with Long Beach Unified School District and Artists for Change to present Youth Empowerment Safety Symposium 2021. It included an advance screening of the short film Lost Girls and a streamed event with an interview of the director and cast of Lost Girls as well as a panel discussion of experts on human trafficking answering questions from LBUSD students. Over 200 people watched the live event and many more viewed later on YouTube.

You can watch YESS 2021 at: https://youtu.be/pEioxXm8mR4  

You can watch Lost Girls at: https://vimeo.com/500694104 Password: Lost 

US Catholic Sisters Against Human Trafficking-At the request of Sr. Kathleen Bryant, RSC, ESTHER Ministry contributed a Reflection for US Catholic Sisters Against Human Trafficking on how Queen Esther continues to inspire our Ministry. https://sistersagainsttrafficking.org/monthly-reflection/

This Reflection is particularly timely as the Jewish Festival of Purim is February 25th and 26th. Purim celebrates the deliverance of the Jewish people from the wicked Haman by the intervention of Queen Esther, a brave woman who never lost hope that God would save her people. 

As our Ministry’s namesake, we are also called upon to fight against modern day slavery happening all around us. Pope Francis reminds us those who suffer from this modern-day slavery are the “least among us” and we are called to renew our commitment to improve the human condition.

We thank all those who have volunteered and donated to ESTHER Ministry.

If you want more info or to be added to our mailing list, please email: estherministry1@gmail.com

If you want to contribute, please send your donations to St. Joseph Church, 6180 E. Willow St., Long Beach CA 90815. Make checks payable to St. Joseph Church and indicate ESTHER Ministry on the memo line.