- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Speaking at his General Audience this week, Pope Francis marked the feast of Saint Joseph the Worker, by preaching that men should be served by their work, not the other way around.

“How many people worldwide are victims of this type of slavery, in which the person is at the service of his or her work, while work should offer a service to people so they may have dignity,” the Pope said Wednesday at St. Peter’s Square, Catholic News Agency reports.

The pope urged his brothers and sisters and all people of the world “to combat trafficking in persons, which is a part of ‘slave labor.’”

 He then reflected on the commitment, effort, satisfaction and difficulty Jesus shared learning carpentry from Saint Joseph in Nazareth, reminding people of the “dignity and importance” of labor. 

“Work is part of God’s loving plan,” he said. “Work is fundamental to the dignity of a person. Work, to use an image, ‘anoints’ us with dignity, fills us with dignity, makes us similar to God, who has worked and still works, who always acts; it gives us the ability to maintain ourselves, our family, to contribute to the growth of our nation.”

He concluded by praying for solidarity and hope among all people, reflecting that St. Joseph and Mary both focused their attention on Christ, and they should be models for all of God’s children.