The Mission of Church for Workers. By Cajetan Peter D'Souza
02 Jun 2009
Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao’s Labor Day 2009 Message, “Work is both a RIGHT & a DUTY” was very meaningful. It focused on the RIGHT & DUTY of the worker. The effect of Liberalization, Privatization and Globalization has badly affected the worker and this is seen when workers are robbed of their employment.
The recent recession has brought many workers back to their hometowns, jobless and dejected. The purpose of enhancing the faith of these workers has now become the priority where workers’ faith is challenged with unemployment and the worry of survival. It is now that the church has to uphold the faith of these workers hit by the Global economic meltdown and help them secure their faith.
The mission of the church for workers stands firm in upholding the faith of the workers. The grace of Jesus Christ challenges every worker to arise and stand for the causes of workers. It enhances the dignity of every worker and protects the causes faced by the worker. The feast of St. Joseph the Worker should challenger every Catholic worker to be a part of the mission of the church. The mission of the church for workers is not just to participate in the services of the church but also empower each and every worker to stand for God and for his Glory. The Catholic worker becomes Christ-centred when they empower other workers and imbibe in them the gospel values and the values that empower the dignity of workers. Their work then becomes an holistic gift as well as the right and the duty.
The Church plays a vital role when workers are empowered and encouraged to be Christ’s apostles at their places of work, church and society. It brings around the change and transformation in every worker, thus spreading the message of Christ-the worker in every land. It becomes an integral part of the growth of every worker in the light of the gospel.
The founder of Christian Workers' Movement, Joseph Cardinal Cardijn had quoted, "Work is not a punishment, a curse, or enslavement, but the cooperation of the laborer with his Creator and Redeemer. But what kind of work? "Without the worker there will he no host, no wine, etc." He said, "A worker is worth more than all the gold in the World." Thus the Christian Workers' Movement helps workers understand their vocation at their places of work, church and society. This should encourage all Catholic workers, business people, self-employed people, housewives, including the retired and those taken VRS/CRS to become the ambassadors and apostles of Lord Jesus Christ by involving ourselves in the existing workers’ movements, associations of the Catholic Church.