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The Duty of Delight: The Diaries of Dorothy Day

Writes Nobel Peace Prize nominee, John Dear, SJ:

"On May 1, the Catholic Worker [movement] celebrates its 75th birthday, and to mark the occasion, Marquette University Press will publish Dorothy Day’s diaries, The Duty of Delight.

Meanwhile, a beautiful new DVD documentary, Don’t Call Me a Saint, has been released, offering rare interviews and footage of the heroic woman whose reach has indeed embraced the world.

Dorothy Day facing her last arrestProduced by Claudia Larson, Don’t Call Me a Saint chronicles Dorothy’s life [1897-1980] — her childhood in Chicago, her college years and the years as a Communist, and the years she wrote for The Call and The Masses. The movie takes in her marriage and divorce and the back-alley abortion, and her imprisonment for demonstrating with suffragettes outside the White House.

It tells of her later love for Forster Batterham and of her contemplative life on a Staten Island beach and of the joyful birth of her daughter Tamar . . .

On May 1, 1933, Dorothy launched The Catholic Worker newspaper. Circulation jumped by year’s end to some 100,000 subscribers. Next to come were a soup kitchen, a farming commune, and a house for the homeless. She instituted Friday evening lectures, where topics never discussed in church circles were finally aired . . .

Her lonely stand against war, I think, is utterly astonishing, especially given that few people then, and scarcely any Catholics — and not one priest or bishop — dared oppose war. But Dorothy said no — from the Spanish Civil War to World War II, from Korea to Vietnam . . .

"By our accepting the cross [she said] . . . we unleash forces that help to overcome the evil in the world."

Read more here.  Watch the trailer here.


  1. Shayne
    19 July 2008 | 10:31 am

    She was never a Communist. She was an Anarchist. Theres a world of difference. (Both Communists and Anarchists are Socialists however)

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