Someday, today will be her feast day.

Today is the 28th anniversary of the death of Dorothy Day.  She died November 29, 1980.

I have to admit, she is a hero of mine.  The reason can’t be stated in a quick sound bite, though.  She is a remarkable example of someone who was willing to embrace the whole of what it meant to be a Catholic — the Church’s doctrine, sacramental life and devotions, a profound spiritual life, and an iron-willed committment both to helping those who are poor and changing the aspects of our society that contribute to keeping them poor.

Earlier this year, the journals that she kept for decades were finally published.  The time I spent reading their 800+ pages made me a better Catholic.  I also interviewed their editor, Robert Ellsberg, which formed the basis of a major article that will appear in the January 2009 issue of St. Anthony Messenger

In 2000, Cardinal John O’Connor (another hero of mine, and for similar reasons) took the first official steps toward opening Dorothy’s cause for canonization.  I haven’t seen much said publicly about the cause since then, but I look forward to the day when we’ll be giving her public veneration within the Church.

[Phil Runkel, archivist of the Dorothy Day Papers at the University of Marquette, notes in the comment box that this photo included here should be duly credited: it’s from the Milwaukee Journal, in February of 1968.  Thanks, Mr. Runkel.]

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One Response to “Someday, today will be her feast day.”

  1. Phil Runkel Says:

    The photo, taken in Milwaukee in February 1968, should be credited to the Milwaukee Journal.

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