As we approach Labor Day, religious groups will likely issue statements celebrating the inherent dignity of work. In this week’s Working-Class Perspective post, Ken Estey explores the relationship between faith and labor to a group that is rarely associated with unions – America Evangelicals.
Working-class American evangelicals have much to contribute to the labor movement. Their theology of work is undergirded by the doctrine that everyone is created in the image of God. They teach that we are all co-creators with God to make the world a better place as we also look forward to its ultimate redemption on the basis of Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. Just the thought of it is dizzying, but evangelicals really believe this even as they recognize the dire effects of sin on the workplace. If anyone believes it is possible to bring to birth a new world from the ashes of the old, it is your evangelical co-worker. The wayin which that will occur may be unfamiliar and may well be uncomfortable in many ways. But it is unlikely that any revival of working-class prospects or the labor movement is possible in the United States without the involvement of its millions of evangelicals.
The Working-Class Perspectives blog is brought to you by our Visiting Scholar, John Russo, and Georgetown University English professor, Sherry Linkon. It features several regular and guest contributors.