If it were not for Scripture on the one hand and Communion on the other, I could not bear my life…
…but daily it brings me joy in this sorrow which is part of our human condition, and a real, very real and vital sense of the meaning and the fruitfulness of these sufferings. Thomas á Kempis, a mystic not at all in fashion now, says that in the cross is joy of spirit. Jesus said, Take up your cross and follow me. There is no one living who is not bearing a cross of some kind... My grace is sufficient, God promises us….
Compassion — it is a word meaning "to suffer with". If we all carry a little of the burden, it will be lightened. If we share in the suffering of the world, then some will not have to endure so heavy an affliction. It evens out. What you do here in New York, in Harrisburg, helps those in China, India, South Africa, Europe, and Russia, as well as in the oasis where you are. You may think you are alone. But we are members one of another. We are children of God together...
I write to comfort others as I have been comforted. The word comfort too means to be strong together, to have fortitude together. There is the reminder of community. Once when I suffered and sat in church in a misery while waves and billows passed over me, I suddenly thought, with exultation, "I am sharing suffering," and it was immediately lightened...
In patience you will possess your souls. Patience means suffering and suffering is spiritual work, and it is accomplishing something, though we don't realise it until later. It is a part of our education, our pilgrimage to heaven. By it we keep in mind that all the way to heaven is heaven.
I have had so many years of experience of how God takes care of those who trust him. He is unfailing and will send us what we need.
Servant of God Dorothy Day. "Comforted So That We Can Bring Comfort." from The Reckless Way of Love: Notes on Following Jesus. (Walden New York: Plough Publishing House, 2017.
Reprinted under a fair use provision.
Servant of God Dorothy Day (18971980) was an American journalist, social activist, and devout Catholic convert. In 1933, with Peter Maurin, she established the Catholic Worker. Day participated in the labor struggles of the 1930s, the Civil Rights movement, and nonviolent, pacifist opposition to WWII, Cold War militarism, and the Vietnam War, and her cause for canonization is open in the Catholic Church. She is the author of The Reckless Way of Love: Notes on Following Jesus, The Duty of Delight: The Diaries of Dorothy Day, The Long Loneliness, From Union Square to Rome, All the Way to Heaven: The Selected Letters of Dorothy Day, Loaves and Fishes, On Pilgrimage, and Wisdom from Dorothy Day: A Radical Love.Copyright © 2017 Plough Publishing House
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