Sunday, 29 November -0001 18:42

The LordÕs Day in Europe, Threatened and Upheld

Written by Rev. H.A. Bergsma
In early 1996 the European Court of Justice ruled that Britain (and other member states) must implement a 48-hour work week. This ruling would affect the status of the LordÕs Day, because the same court would then also grant a concession to the government of Britain, that if it would accept the 48-hour work week, Sunday would not in the future have to be regarded as a special day any more. The LordÕs Day Observance Society lobbied the European Parliament and was successful in getting the Court of Justice to withdraw the special concession to Britain. This same European court now calls on all member states to acknowledge the special character of Sunday as a day of rest throughout Europe. All member states are reminded that they have a responsibility to the religious and social needs of their people, and affirm the rights of workers to a weekly rest. It also acknowledges that Sunday is the best day for this as many family members are free on that day. The Court also expects Britain and other member states to take into account the particular views of those who have objections to Sunday work. This seems to be good news for Christian shop workers who have seen their rights eroded over the years, although we must wait and see what governments and industry will make of this ruling. (From a pamphlet of the LordÕs Day Observance Society, Britain).

We here, on the North American continent, have also such a society, called The Canadian LordÕs Day Association. The purpose of this association is, as it is stated in its magazine, ÒTo Keep It Holy ... preserving the sanctity of the LordÕs Day.Ó A noble endeavour!

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