Friday, February 4, 2011


About 15 years ago a movie called Entertaining Angels: The Dorothy Day Story hit the theaters with a resounding thud of silence.  It was a beautiful movie.  It tells the story of Dorothy Day who grew up in a fairly affluent family, received a degree in journalism and had the promise of an elitist career.  She got pregnant, and the father encouraged her to stop the pregnancy.  When she did, he abandoned her.  This moment was a life-changing event.

She met a French-Canadian philosopher, Peter Maurin, and was influenced to become a member of the Catholic Faith.  Together they founded the Catholic Worker movement in the 1930’s.  Their main task was to feed the hungry and homeless people living in the streets of New York City during the depression.  At a time when she needed help the most, she asked for help wherever she could get it, and even the Church tried to silence her.  She was relentless, and worked harder to care for the poorest of the poor. 
She was accused of being a communist during the 1950’s.  She was involved in the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960’s.  She protested for peace during the Viet Nam Conflict.  She was imprisoned for non-violent civil disobedience.
We go to Mass, we hear the Gospel proclaimed, we receive the Body of Christ in the Sacrament of the Eucharist and all the graces that come with it.  But if we are here because of what we are getting we are here for the wrong reason.  If we are Catholic because we want to get into heaven, then our Catholic faith is, at best, being used minimally. 
Our being nourished by the Eucharist does not just strengthen us for the journey to righteousness, holiness, Catholic piety and the hope of a heavenly reward.  We are fed so that we can feed others.  We are nourished so that we can have the strength to give testimony – to proclaim the gospel to world that is dying of starvation.  When we are fed with the Body of Christ, we are given the nourishment we need to entertain angels.

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