Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Problem With Dorothy Day

But there is a problem.  And that problem is a quote attributed to, of all people, Dorothy Day. “Don’t call me a saint,” she is often said to have said. "I don’t want to be dismissed that easily." 
That quote is probably the biggest barrier to her canonization. Not that it would deter the Vatican, since the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints is used to dealing with the humility of prospective saints.  
But the quote sets up a kind of spiritual roadblock for many of her admirers.  Many believe she is a saint, but balk at supporting her canonization.  Given that quote, would Dorothy really want to be canonized?  Oddly, supporting her feels almost like a betrayal.
Link (here) to read the full post by Fr. James Martin, S.J. at America Magazine

Her adherence to Communism and Marxism (here) and (here) ought to pose some issues as well.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Day embraced anarchism, not communism.

She's too good for those shallow bishops who now want to honor her but she would cringe at their positions on most everything.

Anonymous said...

Dorothy Day would support all Catholic doctrine and would support the bishops against the government.

The problem is not with Day. The problem is with her followers, those who work in Catholic Worker houses. They are typically and almost predictably nominally Catholic, dissenting from Catholic doctrine and holding heretical views on all the usual topics.

Catholic Worker employees are usually leftist ideologues who advocate a skewed understanding of Catholic social doctrine and have little use for anything else Catholic. They map Catholicism onto their leftist ideology, and whatever doesn't coincide with leftism is discarded from their version of Catholic faith. They frequently support female ordination, unnatural unions, contraception, and have an antagonistic attitude toward the magisterium. As such, they aren't really Catholic at all. They are merely Democrats poorly dressed up as Catholics.

I like Dorothy Day, but I lament what Catholic Worker has become without her.

Anonymous said...

"The problem is not with Day. The problem is with her followers, those who work in Catholic Worker houses. They are typically and almost predictably nominally Catholic, dissenting from Catholic doctrine and holding heretical views on all the usual topics."

DD did not and does not have "followers." But please provide examples of this "skewed understanding."

Have you ever spent time at a CW house? Which one(s)?

Katy Anders said...

I don't think that's a problem. It's a good quote, actually.

Neil Young once said he didn't want to be in the Rock 'N Roll hall of Fame because he wasn't "ready to be relegated to a museum."

Although I haven't read the context of the quote, this feels the same way to me. Saints are humans with human frailties, even if it doesn't seem like that after they're dead...

minbee66 said...

Thank you for providing a link to the article "Dorothy Day, 'Catholic Communist,' Propagandist, and Agitator." The article has been revised and the link has changed to http://dorothydayworker.blogspot.com/2012/05/dorothy-day-catholic-communist.html

Incidentally,The blog's author met Dorothy Day while visiting the Catholic Worker Farm in Tivoli, NY.
Anonymous requests "examples of the "skewed understanding" of those now at the Catholic Worker (CW). Here are a few: the August-September 2012 issue of the "CW" announced that the group's October 12, 2012 meeting for "clarification of thought" would present "'Pink Smoke Over the Vatican'--documentary on women's ordination" (p. 8). The June-July 2012 "CW" published an "OPEN LETTER TO WOMEN RELIGIOUS" in which a Jesuit priest expressed his "solidarity with you . . . in the challenges you are facing during these days" (p. 7). In the same issue, Managing Editor Joanne Kennedy informed readers that fifteen years ago a former Catholic Worker's staging of a musical using the character Cleopatra and a cast of street homosexuals to present "openly homosexual issues [and] issues of political corruption and greed . . . did not get support, but some of the cast did start Ishtar, the first gay organization in Kenya." Now, having survived an armed robbery on the Feast of the Assumption, the former CW "is trying to figure out how best to serve the Mother of God." His solution? He has decided to help open "a new house of hospitality in Nairobi . . . directed toward the young gay men who live on the streets." Kennedy quotes from his letter: "It doesn't matter what society thinks, the question is, 'What would Jesus do for the male street walkers of Nairobi?'" ("Brother Mario House," p. 3).

Anonymous said...

Why are any of these examples anti-Catholic or somehow violations of the Faith? Watching a documentary on women's ordination is not an indication of this nor is support for the U.S. Women's Conference. How is the street theater immoral or in violation of a tenet of the Faith? None of this is self-evident. (You do know that the CW is a lay movement right?).

As for "the blog's author met Dorothy Day while visiting the Catholic Worker Farm in Tivoli, NY" please do provide details. Day died over thirty years ago and did not visit the farm after 1978. What did you discuss? Did you ask her if she was a commie?