Dominican Sisters of Peace host weekend for Survivors of Human Trafficking

Members of the Butterfly Group

Many people who want to make a major life change will join a support group. Whether it’s Weight Watchers, Alcoholics Anonymous, or couples counseling, the group dynamic – being with people who face the same issues – can make that change more successful.

Here in Columbus, women who have completed the two-year program at CATCH  (Changing Actions To Change Habits) Court, a therapeutic justice program for trafficked women, often find themselves without that important moral support and group accountability. So to help those women continue their recovery, the Butterfly Group was born.

The women in the Butterfly Group meet twice a month. One meeting focuses on topics that promote their personal/spiritual growth. The other meeting is for socialization, fun and bonding.

The Dominican Sisters of Peace were honored to host the Butterfly Group, all women survivors of human trafficking,

Sister Nadine Buchanan and April Thacker.

for a weekend of support, healing, and pampering earlier in June.

The women met on Saturday, June 2, at the Martin de Porres Center, an outreach of the Dominican Sisters of Peace Outreach Center, and

spent the night enjoying a grown-up slumber party in a dorm at Ohio Dominican University. The event was organized by Sister Nadine Buchanan, OP, and April Thacker, a local woman who is a survivor of human trafficking.

The women who attended this event were treated to a day of pampering, including manicures, pedicures, facials, and hair styling, along with a picnic lunch. They also had a chance to express themselves through art projects, games and storytelling. Sisters from the Congregation joined the women, and many new friendships were created. Movies and catered Mexican food rounded out the first day of the weekend event.

Sunday began with breakfast, followed by a Healing Circle and Blessings lead by Sister Louis Mary Passeri, OP.

Women from the Butterfly Group enjoy their weekend at the Dominican Sisters of Peace.

Sister Louis Mary reflected on healing, and on letting go of the past to create a better future. This concept was made real for each woman when Sister Louis Mary asked them to write something they wanted to leave behind on soluble paper and then stir it away in a bowl of water. This ceremony was very powerful for all of the women involved.

Each woman left refreshed and renewed, and with gifts from the Dominican Sisters of Peace. They left gifts as well – gifts of grace and love for the Sisters who walked beside them on this special weekend.




Posted in News

12 responses to “Dominican Sisters of Peace host weekend for Survivors of Human Trafficking

  1. God bless you, Sr. Nadine, for all that you do for these ladies. You and Sr. Louis Mary are saints on earth!
    Peace be with you, Judy

  2. Thank you once again, Nadine, for finding ways to nurture women who have suffered so much. Your wisdom, compassion and creativity are examples to us in helping these women step into a future full of hope and healing.

  3. I got happy tears when I read this. Something so “simple” as talking and praying and being with friends can be so profound. Thank you for doing this! Praying that the graces of this weekend will stay with all of you for a long time.

  4. It was a wonderful weekend, Nadine. I loved joining your women friends and getting to talk with many of them. God bless you and Louis Mary who do so much for them, God’s special treasures.

  5. Another feather in your hat, Nadine! God bless you for
    all you do for these women. Kathleen

  6. What a creative and lovely gift for these women! Thank you Nadine, and your assistants, for all you do for them! May God continue to bless you in all you do!

    Pat Mood

  7. It gives me joy to read this. Healing is possible. Transformation is possible. I send my love and prayerful support for all on that Journey.

  8. Thank you, Nadine, for this powerful and crucial ministry! I’m so proud that we can do this for this special group of women!

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