Guest Editorial May 2021

An inclusive Christian community in Auckland, New Zealand

Guest Editorial May 2021

We have a lot of public holidays these days and that is great. Christmas, New Year, Waitangi Day, Easter, Anzac Day, Queen’s Birthday and Labour Day. Soon (next year) Matariki will be added.

At the beginning of May I want to talk about May Day – May 1st. A day that focuses on workers and their struggles for a fair deal.

“Workers of the world unite,

You have nothing to lose but your chains.”

Karl Marx was their philosopher (prophet?) and exposed the oppression and injustices that workers faced.

Sadly, when Marxism was transformed into Communism the so-called Marxist states became the worst oppressors of all. The Soviet Union and its satellites set the tone. China is busy smashing freedom in Hongkong and putting the Moslem Uighurs into ghastly concentration camps. And North Korea, ruled by a so-called communist dynasty, is probably the most oppressed country in the world.

So what should we do about May Day, which is not a public holiday. It is not a religious holiday, unless we take seriously the remnants of the fertility cult which includes dancing around the May Pole.

Nevertheless it seems to me that workers’ rights, justice for all and human rights in general, have a religious dimension. The Hebrew prophets certainly thought so:

“But let justice roll down like waters,

And righteousness like a mighty stream.” Amos 5:14

“He has told you, O mortal, what is good,

and what does the Lord require of you

but to do justice, and to love kindness,

and to walk humbly with your God”. Micah 6:8

I think we can take it from there.

Rinny Westra