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News Story

February 10, 2017 — To mark the International Day Against the Use of Child
Soldiers on February 12,
Jesuit Refugee Service and Entreculturas, a social outreach program of the Spanish Jesuits, are joining Pope
Francis to pray and mobilize for the end of the use of child soldiers, in
collaboration with the
Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network

More than 230 million children around the world live in areas
affected by armed conflict. Although there is no accurate data on the total
number of child soldiers, it is estimated that there are around 250,000. Child
soldiers — some as young as 6 years old — are forced to fight and kill. They are
also compelled to participate in espionage, support armed groups as informants,
and engage in illicit activities such as drug production.

Prayer and supporting JRS and Entreculturas programs can help ensure that children do not spend their childhood on a
battlefield. People are also encouraged to support Pope Francis’ initiative by
signing the
related petition

Below is The Pope’s Video — a worldwide call to turn
prayer into "concrete gestures" — from December 2016, in which the pope
prays that the scandal of child soldiers may be eliminated.

[Source: Jesuit Refugee

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