Interview with Solidarity Hall Publisher Elias Crim

Interview with Solidarity Hall Publisher Elias Crim July 18, 2018

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  • RoamingCatholic

    For evidence against the casual classification of Dorothy Day as some kind of “Christian socialist”, here she is in a 1947 letter to readers of the Catholic Worker:

    “Every house should have a Christ’s room. The coat which hangs in your closet belongs to the poor. If your brother comes to you hungry and you say, Go thou be filled, what kind of hospitality is that? It is no use turning people away to an agency, to the city or the state or the Catholic Charities [!]. It is you yourself who must perform the works of mercy. Often you can only give the price of a meal, or a bed on the Bowery. Often you can only hope that it will be spent for that. Often you can literally take off a garment if it only be a scarf and warm some shivering brother. But personally, at a personal sacrifice, these were the ways. Peter used to insist, to combat the growing tendency on the part of the state to take over. The great danger was the state taking over the job which our Lord himself gave us to do, ‘Inasmuch as you did it unto one of the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me.'”

    Doesn’t sound like any recognizable kind of socialism to me. I’m baffled as to how Elias can refer to the likes of her and Wendell Berry and other similar thinkers & disciples in this way, given their deep suspicions of the totalizing tendencies of the State (“Holy Mother State”, as Dorothy sardonically called it).