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COMMENTARY: Vulnerable children desperately need stability and love.

Kimberly Henkel, Ph.D., is founder of Springs of Love, a ministry that offers Catholic foster and adoption support.

Like many others, I looked forward to watching The Sound of Freedom to learn about the true story of children rescued from sex trafficking. Fifteen minutes into the film, I felt like I had been punched in the stomach. I walked out of the theater shaken and distressed. After seeing some of the most gut-wrenching, horrifying scenes of young children being sexualized, kidnapped, abused and treated as dehumanized objects of scorn and pleasure, the statistics at the end of the film seemed bleak. The situation of human trafficking was worse here in the United States than in the film’s setting of Columbia where it seems like chaos and drug cartels reign supreme. In fact, human trafficking is the second-largest illicit industry in U.S., second only to the drug trade, according to UNICEF.

This film is a serious wake-up call to those of us who cannot fathom how anyone could think of harming a child in this way — and a call to action to take a more active role in protecting our children from those who actively prey on them. …