Christmas Giving: Oasis

Women pose together“Jacinta,” a young woman from Nigeria who had been trafficked into Italy as a sex slave, was met on the streets of Italy by Sr. Carla and Sr. Louisa on one of their nightly walks. Attracted by the sisters’ positive regard and offer of assistance, “Jacinta” took the risk of accompanying them back to their convent, where she was provided a loving home environment to begin her new life. 

Paralyzed by fear and low self-confidence, “Jacinta” initially could not be left alone. It would take time to love her back to wholeness.

The Oasis of Mother Clelia project brought “Jacinta” into a community with other women who had been victims of the sex trafficking trade. Under the loving care and supervision of the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and a lay volunteer who lives alongside them, these victimized women gradually gain trust in others and themselves. 

Encouraged to form healthy relationships and take personal responsibility for her future, “Jacinta” began to blossom. She studied Italian, attended life-skill classes and eventually accepted an internship from a business that supports the program’s goals. Along with others in her Apostle Oasis community, she also grew spiritually—developing her faith through prayer and expanding her vision through choir and art.

Two years later, “Jacinta” has a job, lives on her own and is saving funds to bring her daughter from Nigeria to Italy. She also requested to be baptized into the Catholic faith, overcoming the voodoo superstitions that had enslaved her in fear. Now she mentors other women who join the Oasis community.

The Apostles need assistance to sustain this loving and life-giving community ministry. Your gifts provide the following:

  • $25 provides needed medical supplies for one woman
  • $50 feeds two women for one week
  • $75 helps pay the utility bill for one month 
  • $100 purchases suitable clothing for a new arrival 
  • $250 covers the cost of employment skills training for one woman