Dorothy Day—who died in 1980 and was declared a Servant of God in 2012—was widely hailed as a great hero of the Catholic Left, even as her fierce orthodoxy baffled and embarrassed liberal Catholics everywhere. Yet it was Miss Day, this icon of Catholic progressivism, who famously said, “If the Cardinal ordered me to stop publishing tomorrow, I would.”

She meant, of course, Francis Cardinal Spellman of New York, with whom she disagreed on practically everything. Concerning politics, that is. As an ardent and lifelong pacifist, she opposed every war we entered, including the war against Hitler; Spellman, meanwhile, supported them all, including that most bitter pill which was Vietnam—whose final outcome, he prayed, would result in total victory for our side.

But on questions of ultimate concern, which happily and necessarily transcend ideology, they might as well have been two peas in a pod. At the final trumps, I expect, each will find the other equally delighted to be in the company of God and His Angels and Saints. 

Praise the Lord

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