Sunday, February 8, 2015

Pope Francis, Dear Papa, Please Canonize Dorothy Day, Peter Maurin, and Oscar Romero, Modern Day Champions for the Poor!

By Monica, The Lamb Catholic Worker, Columbus, Ohio - Dorothy Day was a Benedictine Oblate and in this Year of the Consecrated Life, how powerful and catalytic it would be for teenagers and adults of all ages to see canonized two lay people who have lived exemplary, prayerful lives to the level of priests and sisters.  My prayer is that Dorothy and Peter are joined with Archbishop Oscar Romero, another champion for the poor in the same era, who was recently (January 15) deemed an official martyr of the Church, to be recognized in this manner.  Dorothy always said that Peter Maurin truly started and was the founder of the Catholic Worker, not her.  He only lived to see it happen for 15 years while Dorothy lived it for almost 50 years, as a prolific writer. In Fr. Robert Barron's Catholicism multi-DC series, it is Peter Maurin's face that introduces the Catholic Worker Movement, not Dorothy's. Thank you, dear Papa, for declaring Archbishop Romero a martyr.

"We have all known the long loneliness and we have learned that the only solution is love and that love comes with community.”
― Dorothy DayThe Long Loneliness

"When we die we carry under our arm what we gave to the poor."
- Peter Maurin 

      One last note is on Benedictine Oblates, or Third Order Benedictines.  You commit to quite a rigorous and edifying prayer life, praying the Divine Office daily in addition to other things.  Amazingly, even though so rooted in rich Catholic tradition, it is humbly and ecumenically non-denominational.  I love that!  You go through a particular abbey, becoming somewhat one in communion with them, and meet monthly with others like yourself in your hometown, have Benedictine priests and monks come to join your groups at times, and go to retreats a couple times a year with the ultimate goal of seeking the presence of God every day.
      You can be as young as 15, which is also an exquisite feature.  You go through a year Novitiate, trying it out and seeing if it is for you, and then you commit.  Yes, you can marry if you have begun this as a single person.  What an incredible, solid faith-filled community of people you would be sharing your life with, sistered with an extraordinary group of prayerful men, the Benedictines.  I am beginning this process through St. Meinrad Archabbey in Indiana. Pray for me, please.  Already I feel the tug away, and understand why St. Benedict himself, wanting to bring monasticism to the world, felt such a forceful level of resistance from Satan that he was given by God the powerful prayers of the Benedictine cross and medal for protection! I have given hundreds of these away in the course of my lifetime to put under loved ones beds, T.V.s, computers, in cars, wallets, and purses, on desks, keychains, etc. not knowing I would one day become a Benedictine Oblate! I had never heard of one, nor even knew that Dorothy Day was a faithful one, Catholic Worker that I am.  What an accomplished orchestrator God is in our lives!
     Use any tool possible to keep Satan and his evil spirits away, who do indeed prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls.  Someone scoffed at this recently and said, "Yeah, but we have God," meaning we do not need these things because God is on our side.  Observe how many, many times Jesus had to order Satan to get behind him!  It doesn't just happen, we have to call on Jesus often to get Satan behind and away from us when tempted away from His will and His plan for our lives.
      Finally, we encourage everyone here in the U.S. who are movie-goers to see the movie, " Old -Fashioned" purposely premiering on Valentine's Day to counter the movie, "50 Shades of Grey."  We need more Benedictine Oblates in the world!