On February 4th, President Barack Obama named Dorothy Day as a “great reformer in American history.” Day was a social activist who worked with the Catholic worker movement, a nonviolent, pacifist movement that continues to combine direct aid for the poor and homeless with nonviolent direct action on their behalf.
And here’s a quote from our sister, Dorothy Day: “Our problems arise from our acceptance of this filthy, rotten system.”
A few years back I (Cassie) read Day’s diaries which are titled The Duty of Delight. This proved to be a powerful read for me as I encountered the works and thoughts of this incredible woman who has done an enormous service for Christians and for all those who care about social justice, peace and compassion.
Dorothy says it much better than I, so here are a few quotes from her:
- “The only way to live in any true security is to live so close to the bottom that when you fall you do not have far to drop, you do not have much to lose.”
- “The true atheist is the one who denies God’s image in the ‘least of these’.”
- “We are not expecting Utopia here on this earth. But God meant things to be much easier than we have made them. A man has a natural right to food, clothing, and shelter… A family needs work as well as bread… We must keep repeating these things… Eternal life begins now.”
- “I have long since come to believe that people never mean half of what they say, and that it is best to disregard their talk and judge only their actions.”
- “Spend your life working on something that outlasts it.”
Today and everyday, may we live our lives in service to those around us.
Excerpts of this blog post were taken from Shane Claiborne in his blog post titled “Dorothy Day the Great Reformer?”