By Joachim Teigen
As the world celebrates International Labour Day, Pope Francis concluded his Wednesday catechesis in St. Peter’s Square by asking St. Joseph, the patron saint of workers, to intercede for those who have lost their jobs and those unable to find work.
Amongst the other Catholic leaders who added their voice of support for workers around the world were the bishops of Argentina and Uruguay.
In their letter to the faithful, the bishops of Argentina reminded them of the fact that Jesus dedicated most of his earthly life to manual labour as a carpenter, thus announcing the “Gospel of Work”. Human work, they said, is the essential key to resolving social issues, which is why “we must fight the plague of unemployment”.
The bishops of Uruguay expressed a particular concern for unemployment amongst the youth, and encouraged everyone to continue on the path of seeking better and more just working conditions, stressing that work is more than a source of sustenance. Rather, it is the domain par excellence in which we develop as individuals and communities.
Later in the day, the Pope reiterated his wishes on Twitter, saying:
“May St Joseph, the humble workman of Nazareth, direct us toward Christ, support the sacrifice of those who do good, and intercede for those who have lost their job or who are not successful in finding a job.”