Dorothy Day: “Don’t call me a saint…”

Here’s the thing about this…
Dorothy Day is widely quoted as saying “Don’t call me a saint…”

But why? Well, she’s no longer with us but based on my readings of her and about her, it’s because saints get made into statues and medals and prayed to.

Dorothy didn’t want to be prayed to. She wanted action. She wanted people to do the same work she did in caring for the “least of the brethren”.

To turn her into a saint is to think that one could help the poor by praying for them. Yes, praying for them is important but Day was an anarchist. She believed in direct action.

I would love for the Catholic Church to recognize her as a saint. (I surely do already.) But in doing so, it adds a human element to sainthood. Day wasn’t perfect. But sometimes God works best through imperfections.

If anything, her possible sainthood gives us, as believers, a very attainable model of letting God work through us despite our flaws.

I have no doubts that God worked through “St. Dorothy”. But don’t put her on a pedestal and smooth out her rough edges with a patina of sanctity. Don’t omit her abortion or her work with radical leftists.

It makes her relatable as a human and gives us a template to what we can do to help bring the Kingdom of God into our own world with all of its flaws.

~ by R.M. McGrath on 02/08/2017.

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