She said, “Don’t call me a saint. I don’t want to be dismissed so easily.” I like this quote from her:
I feel that all families should have the conveniences and comforts which modern living brings and which do simplify life, and give time to read, to study, to think, and to pray. And to work in the apostolate, too. But poverty is my vocation, to live as simply and poorly as I can, and never to cease talking and writing of poverty and destitution. Here and everywhere.
Three decades (almost) after her death, I’d say the time for dismissing a living Dorothy Day as a saint is past. I think the admiration for her will outlast the Vaticanistis who moderate the causes for sainthood. It really doesn’t matter if she gets this day as a feast or not. People will do to her what they do for declared saints. They will read her books and others’ books about her and be inspired. They will serve the poor at houses of hospitality. They will follow her path and do things heroic and saintly.
John Paul II may well be declared a saint, but consider that very very few people will ever follow in his footsteps. Teresa of Kolkata–people will follow her. Dorothy Day–people will follow her, too. We would do well to follow and imitate this person, and I don’t think that’s a dismissive comment at all.