Sunday, February 6, 2011

Dorthy Day

For know, dear ones, that every one of us is undoubtedly responsible for all men and everything on earth, not merely through the general sinfulness of creation, but each one personally for all mankind and every individual man. For monks are not a special sort of man, but only what all men ought to be. Only through that knowledge, our heart grows soft with infinite, universal, inexhaustible love. Then every one of you will have the power to win over the whole world by love and to wash away the sins of the world with your tears. . .Each of you keep watch over your heart and confess your sins to yourself unceasingly. . .Hate not the atheists, the teachers of evil, the materialists, and I mean not only the good ones--for there are many good ones among them, especially in our day--hate not even the wickedness. Remember them in your prayers thus: Save, O Lord, all those who have none to pray for them, save too all those who will not pray. And add, it is not in pride that I make this prayer, O Lord, for I am lower than all men. . ."

"Holier Than Thou"

I quote this because that accusation "holier than thou" is also made against us. And we must all admit our guilt, our participation in the social order which has resulted in this monstrous crime of war.

We used to have a poor demented friend who came into the office to see us very often, beating his breast, quoting the penitential psalms in Hebrew, and saying that everything was his fault. Through all he had done and left undone, he had brought about the war, the revolution.

That should be our cry, with every mouthful we eat, "We are starving Europe!" When we look to our comfort in a warm bed, a warm home, we must cry, "My brother, my mother, my child is dying of cold.

"I am lower than all men, because I do not love enough. O God take away my heart of stone and give me a heart of flesh."

- (Dorothy Day Library on the Web at

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