FOCUS: Labor Day… Patriot Day


The meaning of words takes us on a journey through life. The word labor means bodily toil for economic production, a class of those engaged in toil, hard work, striving toward a goal, to be burdened, troubled or distressed, to be in childbirth, to roll or pitch heavily, and to elaborate on something. The Central Labor Union decided to set forth a special day to celebrate the “workingmen’s holiday.”

The first Labor Day was Saturday, Sept. 5 ,1882. In 1884, the first Monday of September was selected, including Monday, which would give families and workers a nice week-end holiday to close out summer and to begin the fall. The Federation of Labor dedicated the Labor Day Sunday to those dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement. With all of the meanings of labor, we can and certainly are entitled to celebrate the various labors that we face in everyday life.

Everyone in this country falls in the category of labor in one way or another. Children who are just getting back into the school routine are laborers. Students must use their many skills and work to learn how to read, write, and perform various exercises of strength in sports. This is labor.

If you are a woman and have been through childbirth, you have no doubt that the work of bringing a baby into this world is labor. Childbirth may be the most laborious work you have ever accomplished. This labor is one of hard work, but much joy comes at the completion of your labors.

Our congressmen, senators and political leaders are in labor when they discuss, disagree, and set our various laws throughout the government. We the people are in labor when we disagree or try to make changes in the laws that are passed.

The labor force of this country is varied and the most important to the least important job is labor for those who work. Man is happy only as he finds a work worth doing and does it well. —E Merrill Root

As I watch the path of Hurricane Ida, I see the burden and stress that faces thousands of workers as they make life and death decisions for their communities, businesses, families and neighbors. Many people will face life changing decisions as the possibility of destruction reaches their homes as well. The work facing many communities and individuals will take much labor to get through the damage left behind. As I write this article, Hurricane Ida is coming straight our way. We pray for all who have been in labor with this damaging hurricane. With the direction of Hurricane Ida, many of our oil fields are now unprotected and all of America may be facing higher oil and gas prices. This will be a burden for many and will be a task of labor for those who must find ways to deal with the burden of higher prices for travel and for the winter season of heating our homes.

Labor Day for 2021 is Sept. 6. I hope it will be a day of celebration for all those who need a nice weekend to have their families together. As you gather, remember all who do many things with the title of laborer. Remember the folks who wish they had a job to go to every day. Remember the families that will not gather due to the COVID virus that is all around us. Remember those who are stranded away from their country, their homes, and their work due to circumstances beyond their control. They too would like to celebrate the harvest of their labors. They will face much hard work as they return to rebuild their homes, businesses and communities.

We are very fortunate to live in a country where we can work at anything that we strive for. Labor is hard work. Learning and preparing oneself for a career is hard work. If you work hard enough, study long enough, are willing to make sacrifices, and willing to make changes, anything is possible. Life is not easy. Work is not easy. However, if we have goals and work (labor) toward our goals, we might just find that labor is not so bad and that it is nice to know that we are honored for what we accomplish. We do make a difference in the world around us.

September 11 is Patriot Day. What is Patriot Day? This special day celebrates a person who loves and defends his or her country. By the time you read this article, the decision has been made to leave Afghanistan. Our troops left on Monday, August 30. The deadline was to leave by August 31. Planes flew thousands of people out of Afghanistan. However, there are still Americans, Afghans and interpreters who are still in Afghanistan. Many of our veterans, religious groups and dedicated Americans are putting their lives at risk to move those left behind out of danger.

On September 11, 2021, Patriot Day, will be the 20th year anniversary of the day America was attacked in New York, Washington D.C. and a plane went down in PA. Thousands died. Twenty years from this September 11, how many of those left behind will be remembered? How many will be lost? Pray for the safety of those who are still in Afghanistan.

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