A Prayer for Those Who Labor

Spirit of the living God, on this Labor Day, come to those who are unemployed and/or underemployed. In this country, where there is so much opportunity, there is also so much resistance to being fair to working people. People work 2-3 jobs and still can’t make ends meet – and in addition to struggling to make a living, are called “lazy.” Mothers work jobs where they cannot get off to take care of their children when they are sick or are in trouble at school – and they are called “bad mothers.” Families are forced to decide what to spend their money on – food or medicine. Children in this, the most wealthy nation in the world, go to school with shoes that are too small and without adequate clothing in the winter. In this country, too many public schools are in disrepair – no air in the summer and little heat in the winter – making it hard for children to learn, but their parents cannot take them out of those schools because they cannot afford better housing. In this country, some would do away with labor unions because unions fighting for workers means that the profits of their employers are affected. Many people who are employed in service jobs work long hours but have no health insurance. There are people who are working but who make so little money that they still need public assistance. Lord, help us to say what we need to say and do what we need to do to heighten the capacity of people to care about each other. On this Labor Day, come to those who are unemployed and/or underemployed, and help us to raise our voices against economic injustice in a way that compels those who have closed their hearts and their ears to hear and to make changes that result in lives of dignity for those who work for little to nothing.

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