Earlier this week was the anniversary of the death of Dorothy Day, a woman who heard the call of God and allowed that call to shape her life.
A convert to Catholicism, Day had a passion for God, but believed that passion had to be expressed in action on behalf of those less fortunate than herself. Her prayer to God for guidance as to how to use her talents for her fellow workers and for the poor were answered when she met Peter Maurin, with whom she co-founded the Catholic Worker movement. Together they developed a model for radical Christian living – living and working among the poor in New York City (although today there are Catholic Worker communities all around the country).
It is clear that Day internalized something Vincent de Paul so stressed – seeing Christ in the poor. She treated each person with an incredible dignity and love. In a review of a new book about Dorothy Day, Rosalie Riegle writes that the “core of Dorothy Day was “her deep love of God and her unwavering ability to see God I those the world shuns.” Or as a biographer put it, “Dorothy has helped us better understand one of the primary biblical truths: that each person, no matter how damaged or battered by the events and circumstances of life, is a bearer of the image of God and deserves to be recognized as such.”
An admirable model of discipleship for today’s world.