Norma Rae

September 5 ,2016 is the first Monday in September, therefore making it Labor Day in the United States. Honoring all the men and women who are part of unions who work hard, this day is in appreciation of their work. In the 1979 film Norma Rae, we are introduced to a small town factory worker who works to create a union after there are deadly accidents.

Norma Rae Webster is a minimum wage cotton mill worker who finds that her job is taking a toll on her health. One day her she hears a speech by a union leader causing her to work on unionizing her cotton mill. The conditions that she works in are poor, however they are being ignored. Her choice to unionize causes friction between her and her husband and at work. However, Norma won’t back down causing her to be sent to jail. However, she is bailed out by Reuben, the union leader she heard earlier. After meeting with Reuben, her husband and children she is able to lead a vote with her fellow workers. Together they decide to join a union making it so they are able to have proper working conditions that won’t lead to sickness and life endangerment. In the end, Norma has gone above and beyond to ensure her and her coworkers are able to be safe as she and Reuben part ways.

Labor Day is a holiday of rest for many people. However, it is a day to honor all of those who work in unions so they can see their work is not forgotten. In the 1979 film Norma Rae, we are introduced to the concept of a young woman who stood up for safe conditions while making a difference in those around her.

The Nun’s Story

Nun story.jpgOn September 4, 2016 Pope Francis canonized Mother Teresa as a Saint. In her lifetime Mother Teresa devoted her life to helping the poor through creating homes in third world countries. A heroine to many Catholics, she is well deserving of this reward. In honor of her canonization, I have decided to do the 1959 film The Nun’s Story.

After meeting with a nun, Gabrielle is inspired to become one of the sisters. She sets off with her father to the local convent in the morning to start her training. After she says good-bye, she is given the name of Sister Luke and takes the vow of obedience. With taking courses in tropical medicine she hopes to head to the Congo. But, she is first sent to an asylum where she encounters violent and difficult cases. Even though she is struggling with her placement, Sister Luke is able to find faith in God knowing that there is a reason for everything. After her time at the asylum, she is sent to the Congo. There she is able to flourish in her medical duties as a nurse. Creating a difference in those around her, the time she has is cut short when a fellow nun is murdered by a townsman. Even though she hopes to stay a little longer, she finds out that she possibly has tuberculosis. Promising she will return, Sister Luke returns to her home in Belgium where World War II is on the brink of breaking out. With the nuns taking a promise to not be involved, Sister Luke finds herself stuck because her father has decided to join the resistance against the Nazis. One night, she receives word that her father has been killed by the Nazis in a raid, distraught she decides to leave the convent. On her final day, she takes off her habit for the first time years and leaves behind her ring. She exits into the streets of Belgium for her next adventure.

Even though Mother Teresa never left the convent, I still think of her when I watch The Nun’s Story. To me, I see her in the character of Sister Luke as she tries to make a difference in those around her. On September 4 ,2016, yesterday in fact, Mother Teresa became a Saint when Pope Francis canonized her.