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Remembering Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton

November 8, 2021
Icon by Marcy Hall of Rabbit Room Arts https://etsy.me/3D3kDCi (print purchased from Marcy Hall)
Icon by Marcy Hall of Rabbit Room Arts https://etsy.me/3D3kDCi (print purchased from Marcy Hall)

Today is Dorothy Day’s birthday. She was born on this day in 1897 in Brooklyn Heights, New York. She and Thomas Merton were both lifted up, along with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and Abraham Lincoln were lifted up by Pope Francis in his address to the US Congress on September 24, 2015. Calling them “four representatives of the American people,” Pope Francis lauded Day, King, Lincoln and Merton for using their dreams of justice, equal rights, liberty and peace to make America a better place.

Thomas Merton and Dorothy Day were not only contemporaries in the realm of social justice work, they exchanged letters with each other which can be found in the volume of his letters The Hidden Ground of Love. One particular portion of a letter he wrote caught my heart several years ago and is on one of my favorite t-shirts. It says: Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. The full quote is below:

Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. That is not our business and, in fact, it is nobody’s business. What we are asked to do is to love, and this love itself will render both ourselves and our neighbors worthy if anything can.

On this day I remember and celebrate two spiritual mentors who weren’t afraid to shake up the status quo or the religious and civil powers on behalf of the voiceless poor and oppressed. A blessed birthday, Dorothy Day, and thank you for your inspiration in the lives of so many, including this humble Padre.

10 Comments
  1. Reblogged this on Anniegoose's Blog and commented:
    Happy Birthday Dorothy Day

  2. pynkoski2 permalink

    Michael, “Dorothy Day, Thomas Merton and the Greatest Commandment” by J.L.Pycior is an excellent exploration of their relationship. She uses their historical circumstances, letters, and mutual friends to flesh out their friendship and the ways they aggravated and inspired each other. Highly recommended.

  3. Jeanne Buffy permalink

    I was just reading Merton’s Contemplative Prayer book this morning to choose one for Deacons this evening. I chose the one on Divine Love. Cheers. Snow due. Joan

    On Mon, Nov 8, 2021 at 8:31 PM Pastor Michael Moore’s Blog wrote:

    > Michael Moore posted: ” Icon by Marcy Hall of Rabbit Room Arts > https://etsy.me/3D3kDCi Icon by Marcy Hall of Rabbit Room Arts > https://etsy.me/3D3kDCi Today is Dorothy Day’s birthday. She was born on > this day in 1897 in Brooklyn Heights, New York. She and Thomas Merton wer” >

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