May 1

St. Joseph the Worker

Reflection

Joseph had to provide for his family by the work of his hands and the creativity of his spirit.. Joseph was not a rich man. He was a craftsman.  He lived his life in the service of his community. The material with which he worked was without form, shape or utility until his creative vision transformed it into something new. The success of his work brought the necessities of life to his family.  He must have felt satisfaction when his work was accepted with appreciation and he brought home his earnings. In our present economic climate, this is a feeling which many people do not enjoy. The causes are complex but that does not excuse us from examining the situation and exploring the reasons. Today, we are reminded of Joseph the workman and the rights of people, no matter their gender, to honest work and a fair wage.

Prayer

Let us remember those who are without work and struggle to support their families. 

Action

Think of the economy not as an index of growth or decline but as representing persons who need the dignity and resources of honest work. As a citizen be aware of the past actions, causes and economic philosophies that underlie the present problems. Support policies which aim to correct them. 

Suggested Readings

Coming to His own country Jesus taught them in the synagogue, so that they were astonished, and said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and these mighty works? Is not this the carpenter’s son?
Matthew 13:54

Do not take advantage of a hired worker who is poor and needy, whether that worker is a fellow Israelite or a foreigner residing in one of your towns.
Deuteronomy 24:14

All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.
Proverbs 14:23

Work is love made visible. And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy.
Khalil Gibran

Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.
Theodore Roosevelt

To find out what one is fitted to do, and to secure an opportunity to do it, is the key to happiness.
John Dewey

It’s amazing to me that, in all these years since President Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act into law, women today still receive fewer wages than men for the same work.
Mike Honda

Note

May 5th is World Labyrinth Day.  This year the Labyrinth Society is celebrating the day by asking everyone throughout the world who has access to a labyrinth to walk the labyrinth specifically for peace.  There is no right or wrong way to walk the labyrinth.  It is simply a prayerful walk to the center, a short time of gratitude at the center, and a prayerful walk back out to the world around us.  On May 5th, however, we will know that we are walking for peace in union with hundreds of others throughout the world.

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