Seamas O Dalaigh wrote:
No true Scotsman...
No true Catholic...
Set aside your zeal for Socialism and maybe you will understand."To Hell With It" - Dorothy Day
The article makes much of Dorothy’s radicalism, and surely she was radical. But, it does not see how Dorothy’s radicalism after her baptism was not ideological any longer because it was not rooted in an idea. It was rooted in an event, the passion, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus. It was rooted in the person of Jesus whom Dorothy worshipped each morning at Mass and throughout the day in the poor with whom she came into contact. It was rooted in the community of faith, the Church, where we encounter the risen Lord still. Dorothy was not a conformist, she was a “radical,” precisely because she so obviously, so tenaciously and so heroically conformed herself to Christ.
Everyone wants a piece of Dorothy. Thus it has ever been with the saints – literally. We want their relics near us, we venerate those relics, we want to be close to them. Since the issue of Dorothy’s canonization caught the nation’s attention when Cardinal Dolan consulted with his brother bishops in Baltimore last month, both the Catholic Left and the Catholic Right claim her as one of their own.
A few thoughts for the Catholic Left to consider. Do you try and conform the Church it us, to our wishes and wants, or do you try and conform yourselves to Christ and the Church? Do you experience authority within the Church as liberating, which is exactly how Dorothy experienced it? Do you hold on to your solid, well-informed, liberal opinions more closely than the tradition of the Church? Do you reduce the faith to good works?
A few thoughts for the Catholic Right to consider. Do you recognize how counter-cultural Dorothy was? Do you let yourselves see what she saw, that one of the things that holds us back in our commitment to faith is this “dirty, rotten system”? Do you equate the faith with moral probity and conventional values? Do you look at sinners and see someone to dismiss or person with a future, even with the potential for sanctity in their future? Do you love the poor and make that your criterion for evaluating your own economic decisions and that of your society?