Holy Week this year is also National Farmworker Awareness Week (March 24-31). It seems like no accident that the week in which we celebrate Jesus’ service and sacrifice for humanity is the same week that we celebrate the extraordinary gifts that farmworkers offer to our communities.
It’s a time when we both remember and look for hope even in the midst of oppression, new life even in the midst of dehumanization.
Farmworkers do some of the hardest, most dangerous work in our society, yet often go unrewarded. We believe that every worker, no matter his or her occupation, should have safe places to live and safe places to work. And we believe that the laws protecting field and poultry workers should be strongly enforced so that no unscrupulous employer will have financial incentives to skimp on worker safety.
To celebrate Holy Week and National Farmworker Awareness Week 2013, we’ve prepared this simple packet of resources. In it, you’ll find Bible passages, prayers and responsive readings, and several theological reflections.
We invite you and your congregation to join us in taking action. Here are several important ways that you can get involved:
- Preach a sermon about farmworkers;
- Include farmworkers in your congregation’s prayers or liturgy;
- Coordinate a Sunday School class or series about farm- workers. We have a free curriculum available online here: www.ncchurches.org/2010/08/hands-of-harvest-hearts-of-justice
- Host a community meal (with farmworkers if possible) and highlight the contributions that farmworkers make. There is a meal packet of ideas and information available online here: http://nfwm.org/2009/06/planning-a-harvest-of-justice
- Show the free documentary film Harvest of Dignity. You can view the film and download the free study guide here: www.ncchurches.org/2012/09/harvest-of-dignity-film-and-study-guide-now-available
- Ask your congregation how they would like to get involved.
During this most holy of weeks, we invite you to join with people of faith across North Carolina and the country as we work together to make sure that no one is excluded from our communities.