What is Labor in the Pulpits/on the Bimah/In the Minbar?
Labor in the Pulpits/on the Bimah/In the Minbar is...
a September-long program that provides religious congregations the opportunity to lift up the dignity of work, support especially low-wage and immigrant workers, and speak to the experience of essential workers in Wisconsin and around the country. It is also a time to commit ourselves to improving jobs so that workers have wages, benefits and work hours that allow them to be self-sufficient and live lives of wholeness.
To participate, a congregation simply needs to contact us and commit to holding a service during September to honor the dignity of work. WJW provides a multitude of resources that include sermons and scriptural passages in many religious traditions, as well as articles about what workers have faced during the previous year and statements of courage from worker members of WJW. We are also happy to provide speakers for your service.
What to include?
We ask that all congregations holding Labor in the Pulpits/On the Bimah/In the Minbar service include some of the following elements in their service:
- An opportunity within the service or a WJW worker member to share a testimony (available in a pre-recorded video format as well).
- A reflection or sermon on the dignity and rights of the worker, particularly the most vulnerable among us, and the connections to one’s religious tradition. This can take the form of relevant scripture, readings, prayers, or songs on the theme of labor (which we provide).
- Prayer or silence to honor the essential workers who lost their lives during the COVID-19 crisis and those who still continue to work in challenging conditions.
- A commitment to supporting future worker-led actions and encouraging congregations to consider how they can do the same
- A special collection to make a donation to Worker Justice Wisconsin (this is also an opportunity for the congregation to become a WJW member with a donation of $100 or more).
- A donation of Target gift cards to support WJW worker members who are currently suffering from food or housing insecurity, or facing other difficulties making ends meet.