Quotes from Laudato Si that involve Labor (Labour)



98. Jesus lived in full harmony with creation, and others were amazed: “What sort of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him?” (Mt 8:27). His appearance was not that of an ascetic set apart from the world, nor of an enemy to the pleasant things of life. Of himself he said: “The Son of Man came eating and drinking and they say, ‘Look, a glutton and a drunkard!’” (Mt 11:19). He was far removed from philosophies which despised the body, matter and the things of the world. Such unhealthy dualisms, nonetheless, left a mark on certain Christian thinkers in the course of history and disfigured the Gospel. Jesus worked with his hands, in daily contact with the matter created by God, to which he gave form by his craftsmanship. It is striking that most of his life was dedicated to this task in a simple life which awakened no admiration at all: “Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary?” (Mk 6:3). In this way he sanctified human labour and endowed it with a special significance for our development. As Saint John Paul II taught, “by enduring the toil of work in union with Christ crucified for us, man in a way collaborates with the Son of God for the redemption of humanity”. Continue reading “Quotes from Laudato Si that involve Labor (Labour)”


Thoughts from a Working Person’s Pope

Faith and Work in Cyberspace–April 18, 2005

Thoughts from a Working Person’s Pope

(from Initiatives special edition number 148)

Greg Pierce – National Center for the Laity and ACTA Publishing 

Lost amid the accolades about Pope John Paul II might be his greatest legacy: his theology and spirituality of work. Below are 10 great quotes from JPII that show the depth and breadth of his understanding of work. In my opinion, this will be his greatest legacy.  

These quotes are from the special issue of the Initiatives newsletter put out by cyberspacer Bill Droel for the National Center for the Laity. If you want to receive a copy of that newsletter, either electronically or in hard copy, please send me an e-mail and I will have it forwarded to you. (Any cyberspacer worth his or her salt already subscribes to Initiatives, of course.)

Here are my favorite quotes from Pope John Paul II on work:  Continue reading “Thoughts from a Working Person’s Pope”

Spirituality of Work – William L. Droel and Gregory F. Augustine Pierce (1987)

Spirituality of Work

(A chapter from the book, Confident and Competent – A Challenge for the Lay Church, William L. Droel and Gregory F. Augustine Pierce, 1987. Reprinted with permission from ACTA Publications, Chicago, Illinois)

So God created human beings, making them to be like himself. He created them, and said, “Have many children, so that your descendants will live all over the earth and bring it under their control.” – Genesis 1:27-28

Laypeople must realize that their daily work is the primary means by which they help bring about the kingdom of God. Any spirituality which detracts or distracts from work is therefore counterproductive.

In the final sentences of his encyclical On Human Work, Pope John Paul II wrote: “Let the Christian who listens to the living word of God, uniting work with prayer, know the place work has not only in earthly progress but also in the development of the kingdom of God, to which we are called through the power of the Holy Spirit and through the word of the gospel.”1 Continue reading “Spirituality of Work – William L. Droel and Gregory F. Augustine Pierce (1987)”

Laborem Exercens – Summary

Laborem Exercens – Summary

(SEPTEMBER 14, 1981)

VATICAN CITY, DEC 4, 1997 (VIS) – John Paul II wrote the Encyclical “Laborem Exercens” in 1981, on the occasion of the 90th anniversary of Leo XIII’s Encyclical “Rerum Novarum” on the question of labor. It was signed on September 14, feast of the Holy Cross.

In it he develops the concept of man’s dignity in work, structuring it in four points: the subordination of work to man; the primacy of the worker over the whole of instruments and conditioning that historically constitute the world of labor; the rights of the human person as the determining factor of all socio-economic, technological and productive processes, that must be recognized; and some elements that can help all men identify with Christ through their own work.

The Encyclical has an introduction and four chapters: “Work and Man,” “Conflict Between Labor and Capital in the Present Phase of History,” “Rights of Workers,” and “Elements for a Spirituality of Work.” Continue reading “Laborem Exercens – Summary”