Peter Maurin was the answer to Dorothy Day’s “special prayer,” which she offered up 90 years ago on December 8, 1932, at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. As a worker accustomed to manual labor and a scholar versed in Catholic social teaching, he showed her a way for Catholics to help workers and the poor. Peter introduced Dorothy to a faith-based vision of what it might look like in practice to be our brothers’ and sisters’ keeper.
Servant of God Dorothy Day, intercede for us; pray that we grow in courage and faith to follow our own path to holiness.
We give thanks for the teachings and examples of Peter Maurin and Dorothy Day. We pray for the wisdom to better understand the Gospel as they did. May they be our models and guideposts for accepting the personal responsibility to care for one other, particularly those in need.
“Whoever wanted to start a soup line? We certainly didn’t want to, but in the Depression they came to us in numbers. I just think that so many charities have become referral agencies and everybody gets the run-around. You can’t pass the buck that way.… You have to immediately respond to the needs of that person. Certainly, Scripture directs us along those lines.”
—Dorothy Day, TV interview, “Dorothy Day: Still a Rebel,” Bill Moyers Journal 1973.