As Labor Day weekend begins

Image source: The Garden

                            UPDATED FOR 2015!

Labor Day thoughts and prayers, you'll find here:
- A Prayer for Labor Day
- Learning About Labor Day
- Some Words about Work

A Prayer for Labor Day

O God, creator of the world,
of sun and moon and stars,
you chose to fashion us, your own,
your handiwork of love.

Indeed, we are your hands’ own work
and yet into our hands
you give the care
of every living thing.

In more ways than we can count
our work builds up
or tears apart what came
as gift from you.

Keep us faithful in preserving
all you’ve given
lest we harm the smallest part
of all you’ve made.

Give us good and honest work to do
and rest at each day’s end.
Let a fair and good day’s wage be paid
for a good day’s work well done.

Give us work that nurtures and sustains
the ones who serve and those they serve.
Let those who labor work in peace,
in freedom, without fear.

Give those in need a job to do
and to the tired well earned rest.
Let all our work and toil, Lord,
give glory to your name.

Another Prayer for Labor Day

Loving Father,
on this weekend, when we rest from our usual labors,
we pray for all who shoulder the tasks of human labor—
in the marketplace, in factories and offices,
in the professions, and in family living.

We thank you, Lord, for the gift and opportunity of work;
may our efforts always be pure of heart,
for the good of others and the glory of your name.

We lift up to you all who long for just employment
and those who work to defend the rights and needs
of workers everywhere.

May those of us who are now retired
always remember the valuable contribution we make
to our Church and our world
by our prayers and deeds of charity.

May our working and our resting give you praise
until the day we share together in eternal rest
with all our departed in your kingdom
as you live and reign
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

- Archdiocese of Detroit

Learning about Labor Day

The US Department of Labor provides us with the history of Labor Day.  

This Labor Day weekend is a good opportunity for us to remember the wealth of Catholic teaching on concerns and issues related to labor and justice for workers. 

The Catholic Labor Network provides an excellent collection of resources on such issues with links to documents as old as the papal encyclical of 1891 and as recent as the 2012 Labor Day statement of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

On the long Labor Day weekend, take a few minutes to click on the link above and to read, at least, the US bishops' Labor Day statement - a helpful document to study as we approach a presidential election.  And here's a link to the USCCB archive of previous Labor Day statements.

And some words about work...

Image source: Ebooke

is what I do and avoid,
love and hate,
need and ignore,
thrive on, put off,
look for, hide from,
want, reject,
relish, despise,
overdo, skip,
share, possess,
quit and begin...

rules and frees me,
weakens and strengthens me,
separates and connects me,
distracts and focuses me,
hurts and heals me,
empties and fills me,
pushes and pulls me
annoys and gratifies me,
saps and energizes me,
questions and answers me...  
destroys and defines me,
delights and saddens me
dispirits and lifts me,
consumes and develops me,
ruins and saves me...

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