- “To the first human couple God entrusts the task of
subduing the earth and exercising dominion over every living creature
(cf. Gen 1:28). The dominion exercised by man over other living
creatures, however, is not to be despotic or reckless; on the contrary
he is to 'cultivate and care for' (Gen 2:15) the goods created by
“In the Creator's plan, created realities, which are good in themselves, exist for man's use. The wonder of the mystery of man's grandeur makes the psalmist exclaim:
• 'What is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? Yet you have made him little less than God, and crown him with glory and honour. You have given him dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under his feet' (Ps 8:5-7)….
“Work is part of the original state of man and precedes his fall; it is therefore not a punishment or curse. It becomes toil and pain because of the sin of Adam and Eve, who break their relationship of trust and harmony with God (cf. Gen 3:6-8).... Notwithstanding the sin of our progenitors,… the Creator's plan, the meaning of His creatures — and among these, man, who is called to cultivate and care for creation — remain unaltered.
“Work has a place of honour because it is a source of riches, or at least of the conditions for a decent life, and is, in principle, an effective instrument against poverty (cf. Pr 10:4)….Work is essential, but it is God — and not work — who is the origin of life and the final goal of man….
“The apex of biblical teaching on work is the commandment of the Sabbath rest…. Rest gives men and women the possibility to remember and experience anew God's work, from Creation to Redemption, to recognize themselves as his work (cf. Eph 2:10), and to give thanks....
"In his preaching, Jesus teaches that we should appreciate work.... Jesus teaches man not to be enslaved by work.... Work…[is a] participation not only in the act of creation but also in that of redemption. Those who put up with the difficult rigours of work in union with Jesus cooperate, in a certain sense, with the Son of God in his work of redemption and show that they are disciples of Christ bearing his cross, every day...Christians are called to work not only to provide themselves with bread, but also in acceptance of their poorer neighbours….By his work and industriousness, man — who has a share in the divine art and wisdom — makes creation, the cosmos already ordered by the Father, more beautiful....
“Work is 'a foundation for the formation of family life, which is a natural right and something that man is called to'.[John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Laborem Exercens, 10: AAS 73 (1981), 600.]....it is necessary that businesses, professional organizations, labour unions and the State promote policies that, from an employment point of view, do not penalize but rather support the family nucleus....
“The rights of workers, like all other rights, are based on the nature of the human person and on his transcendent dignity. The Church's social Magisterium has seen fit to list some of these rights…:
• the right to a just wage…
• the right to rest…
• the right 'to a working environment and to manufacturing processes which are not harmful to the workers' physical health or to their moral integrity'….
• the right that one's personality in the workplace should be safeguarded 'without suffering any affront to one's conscience or personal dignity'…
• the right to appropriate subsidies that are necessary for the subsistence of unemployed workers and their families…
• the right to a pension and to insurance for old age, sickness, and
• in case of work-related accidents….
• the right to social security connected with maternity...
• the right to assemble and form associations….
“The Magisterium recognizes the fundamental role played by labour unions….
'unions may not misuse the tools of contention ….they must overcome the temptation of believing that all workers should be union-members, they must be capable of self-regulation and be able to evaluate the consequences that their decisions will have on the common good….they should not be forced to submit to the decisions of political parties nor be too closely linked to them'"
“Some people think the Crucifixion only took place on Calvary.
They better wise up …every time the mob puts the crusher on a good man - tries to stop him from doing his duty as a citizen
- it's a crucifixion. And anybody who sits around and lets it happen - keeps silent about something he knows has happened
- shares the guilt of it just as much as the Roman soldier who pierced the flesh of Our Lord to see if He was dead….
"Every morning when the hiring boss blows his whistle,
Jesus stands alongside you….how does He,
who spoke up without fear against every evil,
feel about your silence?
"You want to know what's wrong with our waterfront? It's the love of a lousy buck. It's making the love of the lousy buck
- the cushy job - more important than the love of man!
It's forgettin' that every fellow down here is your brother in Christ!
"But remember, Christ is always with you
- Christ is in the shape up. He's in the hatch.
He's in the union hall….
And He's saying with all of you, if you do it to the least of mine, you do it to me!”