THE POWER OF PRAYER

I wasn’t raised by devout church going parent, but she was a good person. She was a teacher and a hard working person. She tried to take us to church a while when we were small, but we were only dropped off to Sunday school. We didn’t pray together as a family, or before meals, etc. I did feel loved by my mother, grandparents and all the family, even though most of the families didn’t attend church regularly, or at all.

The Lord had His hand on me from the beginning. I remember vividly as a child walking down the lane at my grandparents house and looking up to the sky to see a cloud in the shape of Jesus’ face! During high school I always had the right kind of friends, who were good kids. Some of them went to church regularly and they invited me to go with them. Eventually I went each Sunday with my best girlfriend. I always seemed to make the right choices and decisions. I know the Lord blessed me with all this.

Of all the good i have had in life growing up now i learn our world is in turmoil,unstable full of pressures and uncertainties. And sometimes the problems can seem so overwhelming we wonder if there are any answers to the needs, to the troubles, to the tribulations we face.
But there is an answer. And that answer is found in prayer. In fact, God is looking for people like you and me who will so connect with Him in prayer, that He can unleash His power through us. It is a power to overcome any trial, any difficulty, and any challenge. It’s a power that can change our world!When we learn to pray the kingdom way there are amazing results. When we connect with God in prayer we are given His very presence and power for living.God promises us in Jeremiah 33:3:
Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.

So how do you learn to unleash the power of prayer? How can you know the power of God unleashed in your life? By going to the greatest authority on prayer, Jesus. Jesus lived a life of prayer. In fact, His life is a living prayer because we are told in the Bible:
Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them (Hebrews 7:25).
That’s you and me! He continually, consistently, fervently, and faithfully prays for you and me.
Jesus, the very Son of God, is and was a Man of prayer. In fact, there are ten prayers given by Jesus that are recorded in Scripture…prayers He prayed throughout His life and ministry. He prayed at His baptism. He prayed in the desert during times of temptation. He prayed early in the morning. He prayed before He chose His disciples. He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane. He prayed at the cross.
Jesus’ life was a life of prayer. Is there any wonder that His disciples, His most intimate followers who observed this magnificent life of prayer, asked, “Lord, teach us to pray.”
Now, it’s impossible to understand everything there is to know about prayer. It will take an eternity for us to uncover and discover the full impact and power of prayer in our lives. But while we are here on this earth, we need to learn to pray. We need to develop our prayer lives so that we can unleash the power of prayer.

“Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.”so says the lord our God. It is then out of this i learn of the three types of prayer;

  1. the asking prayer/ knocking prayer
  2. the seeking prayer
  3. thanks giving prayer

Jesus invites us to this amazing adventure of unleashing the power of prayer in our lives. So often the books we read and the messages we hear regarding prayer put us on a deep guilt trip. And rightfully so, because most of us struggle with our personal prayer lives!But beyond the guilt, we need to understand the great joy and privilege prayer really is. We need to grasp the exciting, enriching experience of prayer. We need to understand what God does when His people pray. We need to understand the power that is unleashed in prayer.

Trust me when i say this I did get to see my parents become church going Christians in their latter years and I know they are in Heaven and I will see them again someday! Praise the Lord for eternal life!

In the next issue we will be giving a deeper critique into the three types of prayer… Best regards!

“LOANED LOVER” ON THE HIKE

Just an observation I have made more than half the population of women find themselves tangled in a web of “lovers-on-loan” and this is increasingly becoming a norm in the society. Marriages and courtships have blatantly lost their true essence due to the apparent thrill of a fast-paced and deceptive lifestyle the modern world offers. Faithfulness has become a thing of the past and the value placed upon a family has been eroded.

You can call her names: other woman, the homewrecker, the mistress, the “thought”; I refer to her as the side-chick. You’ve seen her, dealt with her, dated her, hell, you’ve probably been her once or twice before. The side-chick is a complex individual whom no one ever takes a moment to understand. Most of us usually just write her off as “thirsty” or “pathetic.” The side-chick is not just the second option; she’s also a human being.

We live in a society where men having a side chick / mistress happens way too much. To some men having a woman without a side chick is like having a meal without a drink. Not good in my personal opinion, but there are plenty of women who go along with this dynamic. Sometimes it’s the part they choose to play and other times it is given to them and they try to deal with it. So why is that particular woman finding herself as just his side chick and not the main woman in his life? Well let’s take a look at some reasons why she may choose or be chosen for this role.

Soap operas have long glamorized the side chicks of powerful white men, making her seem more exciting, loving and desirable than the wives at home, who were equally beautiful but played out.  It seemed that as long as a man could “afford” two women (and upper-class men were generally white men), it was his prerogative, and not worthy of attention or appraisal.While the so-called side chick phenomenon is nothing new, the language/slang repackages infidelity as something black folk invented, therefore making it more tawdry and scandalous.  White women who have affairs with married men are called mistresses.  Women of color who have sex with men in relationships are called side chicks.

But despite all these phenomenons ladies tend to justify why they would opt to be second best to wives or go in between in long term relationships.

Side Chick Benefits

Let’s face it, some guys give a great benefits package to their mistress. Lavish gifts, bills paid, and all the two minute sex session she could dream of. For many women this is worth the trade-off of not being the main girl. We can discuss whether this is right or wrong but I’m not getting in to that today. The benefits that the woman will receive including having more flexibility on when she does and does not want to deal with this man makes this arrangement work in her mind. She isn’t truly into him either so for her it’s less hassle and more fun as far as she is concerned.

She Doesn’t Value Herself As More Than A Side Chick

Low self-esteem can drive people to deal with a lot less than what they deserve and in this case accept the role of being a side chick. She may have bought into the lie that she can’t do better than this man. That she should appreciate the left over scraps that he feeds her rather than embrace that she deserves receiving a full meal of a man. Maybe she started off not knowing and after it was revealed she found it hard to walk away. Knowing and embracing her worth would help her find the strength to not accept this situation that she knows she is not happy with. This woman should not let that man set her value. She has to realize she is worth much more than this.

Lack of Available Men Excuse Accepted

This is one that you hear from many professional or young women in the community. They say there are not enough men to go around. Once you reach a certain age or stature in your life, then the dating pool dries up and there are nothing but married men left.Garbage. I don’t buy that, , yet this excuse is widely spread and accepted in the community as valid. Stop it!

The Reason: It’s Innocent

Most times, it starts with just a flirty friendship. Both parties know where it will go but despite better judgement, they go forward. Innocent “friendships” and hang-out sessions rapidly snowball into an affair. The side-chick will say she meant no harm. Thus: “It just happened.” Well to me you as good as a hooker who got a loyal customer because once the spark goes off the post remains vacant for new stock.

To conclude, these are just a few common reasons as to why women choose to be mistresses and although they achieve their goals, they do no justice in expressing the genuine creativity in women – a trait that makes them invaluable. No woman deserves to be an option and be discarded when they are of no use. They should understand that the temporary benefits gained from trading themselves are of no benefit and often come at the expense of being condemned by the society.  By placing yourself as an option in a relationship, you are allowing the other person to exploit you, dump you and return to their wives, leaving you with an unnecessary deep scar. Why try to be his other one while you can be someone’s only one? Cut that relationship now and know your own worth!

Its pretty funny how men who have side chicks are celebrated?  The fact that men are not held accountable for their culpability in the destruction of their own relationships, and the onus is almost always and exclusively put on “the other woman,” implies that men can’t help it, that they are biologically wired to be promiscuous . This makes it the responsibility of wives or main chicks to hold their man’s attention, and the responsibility of potential side chicks to resist their advances.  Men, in this dynamic, have no liability for their actions.  If they get caught they blame the side chick for seducing him from home. Either way men shall be a discussion of the next blog post.

KNOWING THE TRUTH.. GOOD AND OR BAD!

The truth about health or relationships can sometimes entail pain and regret. Is it better to stay in the dark?

The worst thing about being lied at is knowing that you not worth the truth. In most cases people ask you questions knowing the answer already. Even the bible supports the notion, “and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” ( John 8:32)

Many truths are painful to hear initially but we still think it’s valuable to learn them. Finding out that your new boss hates the reports you’ve been handing in can be disheartening at first, but it seems better to know this in the long run. Other truths, though, make us feel bad without actually helping us in any way. If you have a terminal illness that’s completely untreatable, you might genuinely be happier living your last months in ignorance. A diagnosis might allow you to seek treatment giving you an extra month of life, but if that extra month is riddled with fear and sadness, it might not be worth it. In these cases, it seems like ignorance really might be preferable.

But the benefits to me as an individual are not the only reason I might value knowing the truth. The things we choose to know and ignore sometimes have consequences for people other than ourselves. It doesn’t benefit me much to know that there are people in the developing world dying of malnutrition. But most people would agree that it’s better to know that there are others who need our help.

But even if the truth is valuable in itself, that doesn’t mean it’s always better to know. There might still  be situations where we should choose ignorance. Indeed, it’s important to distinguish here between intrinsic value and overriding value. Saying that truth has intrinsic value means that something being true is a reason in favor of believing it, and that it might sometimes be good to pursue the truth even when it’s not useful for anything else. It doesn’t mean that the truth is so valuable as to override other things we might value: like pleasure and beauty, for example. So even if truth is intrinsically valuable, we still have to weigh up costs and benefits.

Personally, I don’t think we “know” much at all, no matter the intelligence level. The more you learn, the more you realize how little you know, so I completely disagree with whoever says “knowing too much is bad.” There are uncomfortable truths, which might be what scares you, but personally, I’d much rather prefer an uncomfortable truth over a comforting fantasy. Many people have a hard time dealing with these uncomfortable truths and refuse to acknowledge it, so I guess it depends on the person’s mental fortitude, but I think it’s much better to understand things for what they really are than to persist in delusion. It’s a crazy world, and knowing certain things might be scary, because, let’s face it: there are some scary things/people out there, but it is what it is. Ignoring truths or abandoning rational thought is much scarier to me.

When it comes to relationships i feel it is all based on honesty, it either builds or breaks up relationships. That is why pathological lairs never find peace and tranquility in their love life. I do not dispute the fact that love can be blind but the moment one learns their partner is cheating all the trust is lost which will take time and extra effort to regain and this puts the relationship on a thin line.

Many people feel that little white lies, which may spare their partner some grief are okay, and in some cases that’s true. But you can’t have a culture of honesty in your relationship just some of the time. If you tend to omit or color the truth, so things look a better, it could actually damage your relationship at a core level. Trying to “protect” your partner or just trying to avoid looking bad can create more trouble than it’s worth. It is best to be above board in all your dealings.What honesty gives you is a great deal of comfort. Knowing you can implicitly trust your mate allows you to be your best self, and your relationship will continue to thrive because you are able to give each other the positive energy you need to navigate life’s ups and downs.

Honesty is a way of life, not just a behavior. Keeping it paramount in your relationship it will bring in more good and keep the bad stuff at bay. Knowing you can totally trust one another brings a type of freedom and comfort that helps your relationship work in the best way possible. In summation knowing the truth is a good thing because it help one plan for their future and take caution or make particular decisions whilst thy have enough time on their hands.

HUSBAND ATTENDS EX’S WEDDING

For starters would want to define an ‘ex’. This is an informal noun used to refer to a former spouse or partner in a long term relationship. What i have always wondered is where exactly they belong. Do they need to be always be communicated to? Be updated on any new thing in ones life? Be called in the presence or absense of the new partner? Lastly should ones husband be attending his exes wedding?

Weddings are occasions of laughter, romance and good wishes for the lucky couple. But putting forward your best side becomes truly difficult when you tell your partner you are goin to an ex’s wedding. There is hardly any woman who will allow you to,or at least once, think that that man up there with the bride might have been his if things had turned out differently. Memories of regret and pain can struggle with feelings of envy and embarrassment on such occasions. So if you have received an invitation to your ex-girlfriend’s wedding, should you go or excuse yourself?

The first thing to consider upon being invited to your ex’s wedding is how you feel about her – now. It is obvious that your ex has moved on or else she wouldn’t have been getting married in the first place. It is best you examine your feelings about your breakup and ask yourself if you feel emotionally ready to see her with another man and that too getting married. If you both had parted ways since more than a year back, chances are that each of you has come to terms with the breakup. However if it is relatively recent like three months or less, you might need to be sincere with yourself whether you want to go through this at all.

If you and your ex had had an ugly breakup, maybe it would be better not to attend her wedding. For instance if you had been physically or emotionally hurt by her or are still involved in a bitter legal conflict with the guy, then it is very unlikely that you would be in the right frame of mind to wish him well. The very fact that she has sent you an invitation should not pressurize you to accept it or go along – she may simply be trying to psyche you up or trying to rub the fact that she has moved on. Since you do not really know why she has extended the invitation to you, there is no point speculating about his reasons – it will only leave you emotionally exhausted. Rather respond promptly with a brief note expressing your regret.

Sometimes the absence of a former partner can excite more gossip than their presence. So if you are thinking of accepting your ex’s wedding invitation just to put to rest doubts about your ability to move on, maybe you should reconsider. If you attend the wedding in a negative frame of mind, you are bound to feel ill at ease, not to mention suspect everyone present to pity your situation. The only reason why you are attending your ex’s wedding should be because you have put the past firmly where it belongs and now wish her well.

Yet another aspect to this conundrum could be presented about your current partner. If you are in a steady relationship right now, it would be relevant to consider how your present partner feels about your being invited to an ex’s wedding, much less attend it. Sound out your partner’s ideas on this – if she reacts with suspicion and alacrity, maybe it would be better to politely decline; unless of course you are ready to put your foot down and insist that if necessary you will go by yourself. On the other hand if your current partner sees no harm in your attending an ex’s wedding, you are lucky not only to have been given a chance to make peace with your past, but even to have a nice date to keep you company in the present.

For better living in current relationships, no social texting/phone calls with members of the opposite sex–including exes

Things that look innocent can often become something else. Texting can be dangerous. Even with work, I’d suggest only texting when it’s absolutely imperative, and trying to keep those texts to a minimum, and always business related. In general, men shouldn’t be texting other women, and women shouldn’t be texting other men.This would definitely include one’s ex-wife or ex-girlfriend, but it would also apply once you’re married with someone who is “just friends”. Once you’re married, friends of the opposite sex should be friends of BOTH of you, not just you. So if your husband’s best friend was a girl, he should now really only see her when you are also there.

That may sound like I’m being overly strict, but I don’t think it’s appropriate for someone who is married to be talking to someone of the opposite sex for companionship or friendship. That’s what a spouse is for, and that’s what same-sex friends are for. Even if you mean it absolutely innocently, you don’t know what the other person is thinking. And when you do have trouble in your marriage, you don’t want to be talking to someone of the opposite sex about it.

DAY OF AN AFRICAN CHILD, JUNE 16

JUNE 16
JUNE 16

Young Africans have always been great advocates, standing and raising their voices for their right to education. On the streets of Soweto in June 16, 1976, hundreds of unarmed students were shot dead by South African police during a protest. The exact number of victims is unknown, but estimates range from 176 to 700.The Day of the African Child has been celebrated every year since 1991, when it was first initiated by the Organisation of African Unity.

Why did this children protest?

Education injustice and inequality in Apartheid South Africa. The level of education was already very poor as natives were not to receive an education that would lead them to aspire to positions they wouldn’t be allowed to hold in society.

To compile the issue, the Deputy Minister of Bantu Education, Punt Janson then enforced a decree that mathematics and social studies were to be taught in Afrikaans, with general science and practical subjects in English, while indigenous languages would only be used for religion and music and physical culture.

Students did not agree with this introduction as many teachers could not speak the new language but now had to teach with it. As a result, the students encountered several difficulties when studying subjects taught with the language.

The Protest

“We shall reject the whole system of Bantu Education whose aim is to reduce us, mentally and physically, into ‘hewers of wood and drawers of water’.” – Soweto Students Representative Council, 1976.

It began with a peaceful march towards the Orlando Stadium in Soweto by about 10,000 – 20,000 gallantly dressed students led by the Soweto Students’ Representative Council’s (SSRC) Action Committee. The police tried to stop the students from reaching the stadium by barricading it and when they took to another route, a police officer fired a shot in the air to intimidate them and others threw tear gas.

The peaceful protest became chaotic and the students reacted by hurling stones at the police, who opened fire on unarmed students. This led to the death of Hector Pieterson, 13, one of the first schoolchildren shot by the police; the young boy became the symbol of the protest. This protest became a landmark in the history of Africa and the African Union (then Organization of African Unity) designated the day “Day of the African Child” in 1991. Every year on June 16, events are organised around the continent to promote children’s rights.

The Day of the African Child 2015:

This year the African Union chose child marriage as its theme: 25 Years after the Adoption of the African Children’s Charter: Accelerating our Collective Efforts to End Child Marriage in Africa.

Child Marriage in Africa/Nigeria

Every year, millions of girls under the age of 18 become brides and majority drop out of school. Lack of educational attainment is not only the greatest predictor of the likelihood of child marriage; ensuring girls stay in school is one of the most effective ways of preventing child marriage. In sub-Saharan Africa, 66% of women with no education were married before age 18 compared to only 13% of those with secondary education.

The prevalence of child marriage in Nigeria is also high as 43% of girls are married off before their 18th birthday and 17% before they turn 15. This prevalence varies widely from one region to another, with figures as high as 76% in the North West region. Importantly, education is a strong indicator of whether a girl will marry as a child. Eighty-two percent of women aged 20-24 with no education were married by the age of 18, as opposed to 13% of women who have at least finished secondary education.

This is what statistics tells us and yet, little or nothing is being done to end child marriage in Nigeria. If education is one of the most effective ways of preventing child marriage, why do we have about 10.5 million out-of-school children?

Early marriage makes girls vulnerable to multiple negative social and health outcomes. Young girls need to be protected from the society by the society. We all have a role to play in ending child marriage in Nigeria and Africa; and this can be through advocacy, enactment of  laws, enforcement of these laws and continued access to quality and affordable education which is critical to protecting girls from the consequences of child marriage.

Children of Africa’s 54 countries are all unique and diverse, nonetheless they share the same struggle for daily survival, as disease often run rampant, child labor and the use of child soldiers impacts most of the continent. Their diversity aside the children of Africa are more often displaced by force or urbanization than another continent, they suffer more than any other nations from HIV/AIDS, education is a right all too often missed, while child labor and trafficking often surpass it in demand.  The Day of the African Child leaves one to reflect on the often dire needs of children across Africa, and give focus on the need to increase equal access to suitable education, health, and the protection against abuses such as physical and sexual abuse, trafficking, the recruitment of child soldiers, child labor and child marriages.

While  children across the vast expanses of the Africa continent have received an international day of recognition, the true day of recognition has yet to be seen.  Recognition and value for the true worth of the African child will come only when their voices are truly heard and an investment in their collective future is seen; when one sees and end to gender inequality,  when their little bodies are no longer seen as disposable and an end to demand is seen for their use as tools of the sex trade, labor and weapons of war.  Until that day children across the continent of Africa continue to suffer unjustly, their abusers receive little recourse for their actions, and the majority of the governments sit idly by.  Therefore take a moment  today to share their stories of suffering and hope, for then tomorrow may be a better day for children around the globe.

MOTHER’S DAY

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She’s warm, loving and supportive. With her help, you feel like you can tackle the world. You can be anybody you want to be because she is behind you. She gives you confidence and a kick in the butt when you need it. As long as she’s alive, you have a place to go home when the world gets a little tough. She’s mother. There’s no one on earth who cares for you like she does. No one.

Yesterday was yet a special day for all the women who have children on earth. Happy Mother’s Day to all of you moms out there. I hope you get breakfast in bed, and a wonderful dinner at your favorite restaurant, treated like a queen for the day for the entire day. I also want to wish my mom a Happy Mother’s Day, is now an angel in heaven. She’s organizing a squadron of angels to watch over and protect me, and I’m thankful for that.

Mother’s Day is a modern celebration honoring one’s own mother, as well as motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of mothers in society. It is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in the months of March or May. It complements similar celebrations honoring family members, such as Father’s Day and Siblings Day.

The celebration of Mother’s Day began in the United States in the early 20th century; it is not related to the many celebrations of mothers and motherhood that have occurred throughout the world over thousands of years, such as Pitru Paksha in Ancient India, the Greek cult to Cybele, the Roman festival of Hilaria, or the Christian Mothering Sunday celebration (originally a celebration of the mother church, not motherhood). Despite this, in some countries, Mother’s Day has become synonymous with these older traditions.

The modern American holiday of Mother’s Day was first celebrated in 1908, when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother at St Andrew’s Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia, which now holds the International Mother’s Day Shrine. Her campaign to make “Mother’s Day” a recognized holiday in the United States began in 1905, the year her beloved mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis, died. Anna’s mission was to honor her own mother by continuing work she started and to set aside a day to honor mothers, “the person who has done more for you than anyone in the world”. Anna’s mother, Ann Jarvis, was a peace activist who cared for wounded soldiers on both sides of the Civil War and created Mother’s Day Work Clubs to address public health issues.

In 1908, the US Congress rejected a proposal to make an official holiday, among jokes that they would have to proclaim also a “Mother-in-law’s Day”.Due to the campaign efforts of Anna Jarvis, by 1911 all US states observed the holiday, with some of them officially recognizing Mother’s Day as a local holiday, he first in 1910 being West Virginia, Jarvis’ home state. In 1914 Woodrow Wilson signed the proclamation creating Mother’s Day, the second Sunday in May, as a national holiday to honor mothers.

Although Jarvis was successful in founding Mother’s Day, she soon became resentful of the commercialization and was angry that companies would profit from the holiday. By the early 1920s, Hallmark and other companies started selling Mother’s Day cards. Jarvis became so embittered by what she saw as misinterpretation and exploitation that she protested and even tried to rescind Mother’s Day. The holiday that she had worked so hard for was supposed to be about sentiment, not about profit. Jarvis’ intention for the holiday had been for people to appreciate and honor mothers by writing a personal letter, by hand, expressing love and gratitude, rather than buying gifts and pre-made cards. Jarvis organized boycotts and threatened lawsuits to try to stop the commercialization. She crashed a candymakers’ convention in Philadelphia in 1923. Two years later she protested at a confab of the American War Mothers, which raised money by selling carnations, the flower associated with Mother’s Day, and was arrested for disturbing the peace.

An activist, writer and poet Julia shot to fame with her famous Civil War song, “Battle Hymn of the Republic”. Julia Ward Howe suggested that June 2 be annually celebrated as Mothers Day and should be dedicated to peace. She wrote a passionate appeal to women and urged them to rise against war in her famous Mothers Day Proclamation, written in Boston in 1870. She also initiated a Mothers’ Peace Day observance on the second Sunday in June in Boston and held the meeting for a number of years. Julia tirelessly championed the cause of official celebration of Mothers Day and declaration of official holiday on the day. Her idea spread but was later replaced by the Mother’s Day holiday now celebrated in May.

Are you celebrating the day without your mum? As years have gone by, I have met others who also lost their mom who can relate. So what can we do on Mother’s Day? Instead of the morbid visit to a grave site, I try to honor my mom by remembering the lessons she taught me. By being the person she always knew I could be. By appreciating the little things in life that she wasn’t able to experience.

People have said it gets easier with time. It doesn’t, you just learn to make the adjustments. It’s not to say you can’t have a good life because you can. There will always be that missing element and a it’s a huge one. I don’t deny it. If you’ve lost your mom and youre reading this; you are not alone. If you have your mom on this mothers day; hug her tight. She won’t always be here.

So this is it for mother’s day.

WHAT IS MAY DAY?

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I know clearly most of us set back home and enjoyed the day as it made a long weekend a success. I mean who would want to miss having a Friday all to themselves? The holiday was in deed a blessing for us all. But what did you do? how did you celebrate the day? What significance?

Well lets start off with a brief insight of the month May.The month of May was named for the Greek goddess Maia, who was identified with the Roman eraMaypole goddess of fertility; Bona Dea, whose festival was held in May, which is the month of autumn in the Southern Hemisphere and spring in the Northern Hemisphere.
During the month of May; in many places around the world there are various festivals celebrated by playing music, singing and dancing around what we now call the Maypole.

In addition to the music, singing and dancing, there are also climbing contests to see who can climb the king’s phallus the fastest; with loads of beer as the big prize. These poles are erected on or around the first day of May, with festivities lasting all throughout the month and in particular, on May Day.

Rosa Luxemburg tells us in her article “What are the origins of 1st May?” written in 1894, that it was in Australia where the workers’ cause was joined to the old Spring celebration on this day, more precisely in 1856, when the workers of this British colony began a campaign for an eight-hour working day, making a stoppage. This was total and the action was repeated the following year. The cause of the international workers had been launched.

In the USA the labour movement would choose this day to focus its demands. The embryonic workers’ associations and unions organized themselves during the 19th century and began to fight against deplorable working conditions – a working day of between 8 and 10 hours and in many cases in conditions of extreme discomfort and/or danger. In some industries, the life expectancy did not reach 25 years of age!

The unions/associations formed the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions – FOTLU (November 1881), later the American Labour Federation, which at its National Convention in Chicago in 1884, proclaimed that after 1 May 1886, the working day should be 8 hours. FOTLU announced a series of actions and strikes to apply pressure on the authorities to force them to implement the new working regime.

Meanwhile the labour movement was brutally repressed by the Pinkerton security agents and the police. When the day arrived, 1st May 1886, around 300,000 workers in 13,000 firms started to strike. Chicago was the epicentre of the labour movement and names such as Louis Lingg, Johann Most, Albert Parsons and August Spies will forever be linked with May 1st. The strikes and the revolutionary atmosphere created by the various factions linked to the labour movement continued during May 2 and 3, but always in a climate of peace. However, everything would change the following day.

The day was never adopted as a public holiday in the USA but the workers’ movement and its claims echoed far and wide, reaching the four corners of the world, where May 1st started to become the focal point for demonstrations in favour of workers’ rights. International Socialist proclaimed the date International Labour Day in 1889.

I hope you had the best May day ever!

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