May 1, 2011

A day for human dignity.

What a day. It has long been celebrated as ‘May Day’, a workers’ memorial of sorts across the world. For Catholics, it is the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker.

Pope Pius XII…in 1955 he established the Feast of “St. Joseph the Worker”, to be celebrated on 1 May. This date counteracts May Day, a union, workers and socialists holiday and reflects Joseph’s status as what many Catholics and other Christians consider the “patron of workers” and “model of workers.” Catholic and other Christian teachings and stories about or relating to Joseph and the Holy Family frequently stress his patience, persistence, and hard work as admirable qualities which believers should adopt.

This year, it was a hugely important date celebrated across the world as the beatification of Blessed John Paul II, the pope who faced down the evils of communism and its oppression of human beings.

Somehwere late in the re-air of those beatification ceremonies US time, the news broke of the death of the top terrorist leader, Osama bin Laden. The timing was absoutely jarring.

I switched from Pope Benedict to CNN just in time to catch President Obama deliver this address. And among other statements, this caught my attention:

So his demise should be welcomed by all who believe in peace and human dignity.

This day will go down in history. I’m eager to hear Pope Benedict’s response.


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