Pope Celebrates St Joseph (1 May 1996) - Pope John Paul II
Celebrating the feast of St. Joseph the Worker, Pope John Paul II devoted his weekly Wednesday audience to
a discussion of the value of human work.
The Pope invoked the patronage of St. Joseph on behalf of all workers, and
all people looking for work. "Let us pray for all those who are
responsible for human labour, and for all the workers in the world, for
human labour in every form," he said.
Saying that the right to hold a productive and rewarding job is a fundamental human right, the Pope also
called upon all Christians to be sensitive to the needs of unemployed workers. Each breadwinner, he said,
should be able to supply the needs of his family from the earnings of a meaningful job.
Pope John Paul recalled his own background as a labuorer. And recognizing a
large group of Polish pilgrims who had come to Rome for the celebration, he
spoke with pride--and in Polish--about the recent history of labour
movement in his own country. "I am grateful to God for the experience of
having been a worker during the Nazi occupation of Poland," he said. "But
I am also grateful for the experience of living through a more recent
period in which there was a fight for social justice."
The Holy Father ended his remarks with another personal note: He sent his hearty greetings to the workers
at the Solvey chemical plant where he had been a common labourer forty
For further information or comments please