Pope Francis reminds us that Jesus and Saint Joseph were workers, and he spoke about the dignity of work. As reported in the publication “America” magazine, Our Holy Father stated, “We do not get dignity from power or money or culture. We get dignity from work.” He noted, “Work is fundamental to the dignity of the person. Work, to use an image, ‘anoints’ with dignity, fills us with dignity, makes us similar to God who has worked and still works, who always acts.” He also stressed that the dignity and safety of the worker should also be protected.
As we celebrate this day, we are invited to take time for rest and recreation. And, as we reflect on these profound words of Our Holy Father, we are also encouraged to take time for prayer as we honor those who labor in the spirit of Jesus and Saint Joseph. The following prayer provided by the organization “Bread for the World” reflects the spirit of this day.
DELIVER US, IN OUR VARIOUS OCCUPATIONS, FROM THE SERVICE OF SELF ALONE,
GOD OF JUSTICE, WE PRAY FOR ALL WORKERS, THAT THEY WOULD RECEIVE
FOR THOSE WHO SEEK WORK, PROVIDE JOBS
MAKE THOSE WHO LEAD INDUSTRIES AND COMMERCE OF THIS COUNTRY
BUILD UP IN THE LEADERS OF OUR COUNTRY A RESPECT FOR ALL LABORS.
DELIVER US, LORD JESUS, FROM THE MALIGNING EVILS OF GREED, SLOTH, AND GLUTTONY
WE ASK ALL THESE THINGS FOR OUR GOOD AND YOUR GLORY. AMEN.
Fr. Neil Herlihy