Labor in the pulpits, on the Bimah, in the Minbar

I was raised in Abilene, Texas, which some call the “buckle of the bible belt”.  One interesting thing about growing up in that part of the country was experiencing so many different types of faith and religious communities.  Whether they were Jewish, Catholic, Protestant, or Muslim, most of these communities had one thing in common: their respective commitments to social justice.

An organization called Interfaith Worker Justice (IWJ) works year-round to highlight this very commitment to social and economic justice.  IWJ is a labor rights group that organizes the religious community around issues and campaigns that will improve wages, benefits, and conditions for workers. The organization strives to give workers—especially those in low-wage jobs—a voice at work and in their communities.  

This Labor Day weekend, IWJ partnered with the AFL-CIO for its Labor in the pulpits, on the Bimah, in the Minbar program.  The annual event encourages religious congregations across the country to host union members and labor leaders to refl­ect on work, justice, and the meaning of Labor Day from a faith perspective.

American Rights at Work’s very own Executive Director Kimberly Freeman Brown was one of the many labor leaders who took part in this year’s program. Speaking to the congregation of McKendree-Simms Brookland United Methodist Church she had this to say:

“In times like these, we need to take action to stem the tide of economic disadvantage. And protecting workers’ rights to participate in unions should be an essential part of any strategy to establish justice for working people.  I’m reminded of Dr. King’s words about the role of unions during and after the Great Depression, another time of recovery in America’s history. Said Dr. King, ‘the labor movement was the principal force that transformed misery and despair into hope and progress.’”

To that, I think America’s working people of all faiths can give a hearty “Amen!”

For more information regarding Interfaith Worker Justice and Labor in the Pulpit click here.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • email
  • Print
This entry was posted on Tuesday, September 7th, 2010 at 3:23 pm and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply