17th February marks Racial Justice Sunday, which focuses on the experiences of ethnic communities in England and Wales.

It is a day on which we all called to earnestly pray for an end to racism and racial inequality in our country.

The theme this year is Dignity of Work, looking at how all people must not be exploited or face discrimination and hatred in their work.

In a world steeped in violence, conflict, and discrimination, the Gospel demands that we acknowledge the dignity of the human person, the necessity of building peace, prosperity, justice for all.

In Octogesima Adveniens and Gaudium et Spes, St Paul VI teaches that “all people have a right to work … to lead a worthy life on the material, social, cultural and spiritual level". We are therefore called to ensure people are not exploited while they work, and to open our hearts to those who face this hatred. “As you did this to the one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me…

In our task as disciples of Christ, our responsibility is to make sure people are treated with dignity at work and are not exploited. Migrant communities and those suffering from racial abuse are particularly vulnerable to being drawn into unjust working conditions and labour exploitation.

News and information regarding Racial Justice Sunday is available on the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales website: www.catholicnews.org.uk/racial-justice-sunday-2019

Fr Ashley Beck's Reflection

Prayer card


Bidding prayers for RJS 19

For all trapped in work which compromises their human dignity;

May they come to know liberty and justice


For legislators and law enforcement agencies;

may they strengthen and protect the rights of workers.


A prayer

For those facing exploitation

O God,

Gracious God,

From your abundance all gifts and skills are bestowed,

Making us participants in your work of creation.

By the word of your Son,

Confront our greed,

Challenge us when we treat people as means of profit,

Or discriminate unjustly against our fellow human beings.

Raise us up to new life in your service

That in all our works

Begun, continued and ended in you

We may glorify your holy name.

Through Jesus Christ your Son, our Lord,


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