Work Values/Faith Values: a conversation

Thumbnail Image
Flahive, Michael
Master of Arts in Pastoral Theology
Over the past five years, St. Austin Parish has been operating out of five principles named as expressions of what we are to be about as a community of faith. Each year one of these principles is chosen to be the highlight of our pastoral activity for that year. This year the focus has been spirituality. Following this lead, our Sunday morning lecture - discussion presentations, Development of Adult Faith, have offered a number of expressions out of the wide arena of spirituality. In the Fall, the most highly attended presentation was one that addressed bringing spirituality into the workplace. From the participants a number of how-to and practical questions came forth, leading to the prime question: is it even possible to interlace the apparent two worlds of faith and work? The desire (may | be my dramatic self and say hunger) expressed in these questions is one observation that leads me to the focus of this pastoral project : a conversation between the world of work and the world of faith. Even the phrasing of the title points to some of the quandary which surrounds this exchange. Are these truly two different and sovereign states that certainly may be in diplomatic contact, but not even considering a unification as one state of existence; as the separation in the title implies? And if this is the reality of present existence, then what of the citizen who hopes (needs) to be active in both realms, where does one’s loyalty of energy lie? We have still not fully addressed in practical terms, the dichotomy Augustine of Hippo addressed in his tale of two cities.