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Reflections on the past and future of a long-standing community

Voices from the Catholic Worker

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edited by Rosalie Riegle Troester

"This book is even more essential now than when these voices were first heard. It deals with a movement that is so much a symbol of American hope that it's in a class by itself. I strongly recommend Voices from the Catholic Worker."
Studs Terkel

This rich oral history weaves a tapestry of memories and experience from interviews, roundtable discussions, personal memoirs, and thorough research. In the sixtieth anniversary year of the Catholic Worker, Rosalie Riegle Troester reconfirms the diversity and commitment of a movement that applies basic Christianity to social problems.

Founded in 1933 by Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin, the Catholic Worker has continued to apply the principles of voluntary poverty and nonviolence to changing social and political realities. Over 200 interviews with Workers from all over the United States reveal how people came to this movement, how they were changed by it, and how they faced contradictions between the Catholic Worker philosophy and the call of contemporary life.

Vivid memoirs of Dorothy Day, Peter Maurin, and Ammon Hennacy are interwoven with accounts of involvement with labor unions, war resistance, and life on Catholic Worker farms. The author also addresses the Worker's relationship with the Catholic Church and with the movement's wrenching debates over abortion, homosexuality, and the role of women.

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Contents

Acknowledgments
Introductory Notes

Part I: History

1. In the Beginning Was
Joe Zarrella • Alice Zarrella • John Cort • Justine Murphy • Nina Polcyn Moore • Florence Weinfurter • Sr. Ruth Heaney • Dorothy Gauchat • Julian Pleasants • Mary Jane Pleasants • Dr. Arthur Falls • Ed Marciniak • Jim O’Gara • Joan O’Gara • Tom Cornell • Jim Forest • Bill Griffin • Tom Lewis • Willa Bickham • Daniel Marshall • John Cooper • Barbara Blaine • Catherine Morris

2. The Word
Ade Bethune • Joe Zarrella • Alice Zarrella • Jeannette Noel • Tom Cornell • Pat Jordan • Jim Forest • Gary Donatelli • Peggy Scherer • Brian Terrell • Jane Sammon • Jeff Dietrich • Patty Burns • Scott Schaeffer-Duffy • Mary Kay Meyer

3. Memories of Dorothy Day
Joe Zarrella • Alice Zarrella • Jane Sammon • Ade Bethune • John Cort • Michael Harrington • Bob Tavani • Tom Cornell • Jim Forest • Jim O’Gara • Brian Terrell • Judith Malina • Fr. Richard McSorley • Terry Rogers • Mary Lathrop • Catherine Morris • Chris Delany • Dan Delany • Jim Eder • Kathe McKenna • Kathleen Jordan • Pat Jordan • Robert Ellsberg

4. Memories of Peter Maurin
Mike Garvey • Joe Zarrella • Alice Zarrella • Michael Harrington • John Cort • Jim O’Gara • Brian Terrell • Gary Donatelli • Chris Montesano • Daniel Marshall • Sr. Ruth Heaney

5. Memories of Ammon Hennacy
Florence Weinfurter • Pat Murray • Mary Murray • Fr. Bernie Gilgun • Julian Pleasants • Michael Harrington • Mike Garvey • Tom Cornell • Mary Lathrop • Pat Coy • Utah Phillips

6. The Ideals of One’s Youth: Michael Harrington

An Interlude: Singing Old Songs

Part II: The Work

7. Coming and Becoming: Stories of Conversion
Richard Cleaver • Gary Donatelli • Brian Terrell • Marc Ellis • Tom Cornell • Kathleen Jordan • Pat Jordan • Teka Childress • Don Timmerman • Robert Ellsberg • Lynn Lassalle-Klein • Jim Levinson • Jonathan Kirkendall • Bob Imholt • Linda Greenwald • Chris Montesano • Donna Domiziano • Fr. Bernie Gilgun • Patty Burns • Claire Schaeffer-Duffy • Gayle Catinella

8. Hospitality: A Roundtable Discussion
John Williams • Fr. Richard McSorley • Brian Terrell • Betsy Keenan • Kassie Temple • Barbara Blaine • Bob Tavani • Jeff Dietrich • Catherine Morris • Fr. Jack Keehan • Kathe McKenna • Frank Walsh • Kathy Shuh-Ries • John Cooper • Debbie McQuade • Gayle Catinella • Jeannette Noel • John Mahoney • Donna Domiziano • Charles Walzem • Tom Cornell • Dennis Coday • Margaret Quigley Garvey • Gary Donatelli • Richard Cleaver • Mary Kay Meyer • Larry Ray-Keil • Teka Childress • Jonathan Kirkendall

9. Protest and Resistance: A Roundtable Discussion
Karl Meyer • Chuck Quilty • Pat Coy • Sr. Anna Koop • Jane Sammon • Brian Terrell • Betsy Keenan • Sue Frankel-Streit • Mary Aileen Schmeil • Willa Bickham • Steve Soucy • Sr. Char Madigan • Mary West • Jim Forest • Tina Sipula • Chuck Trapkus • Fr. Tom Lumpkin • Scott Schaeffer-Duffy • Jeff Dietrich • Paul Magno • Marcia Timmel • Darla Bradley • Tom Lewis

10. Paper Cranes and Fighter Planes: Kathleen Rumpf of Syracuse, New York

11. Workers Who Are Scholars
Meg Hyre • Angela Jones • Mark White • Chris Montesano • Catherine Morris • Pat Jordan • Eileen Egan • John Cooper • Fr. Tom Lumpkin • Jane Sammon • Jerry Ebner • Tina Sipula • Jim Forest

12. Harvest of Dreams: Catholic Worker Farms: A Roundtable Discussion
Jim Eder • Bob Tavani • Chris Shepherd • Ed Forand • Chris Montesano • Sr. Anna Koop • Brian Terrell • Betsy Keenan • Jim Levinson • Gayle Catinella • Jim O’Gara

13. The Mother House, New York
Jane Sammon • Ed Forand • Gary Donatelli • Tom Cornell • Jo Roberts

Part III: Living Together

14. Community: A Roundtable Discussion
Tina Sipula • Darla Bradley • Fr. Jack Keehan • Pat Jordan • Jim Eder • Gary Donatelli • Jim Kelly • Chuck Matthei • Kathe McKenna • Catherine Morris • Charles Walzem • Brian Terrell • Jane Emerson • Don Timmerman • Sue Frankel-Streit • Ed Forand • Bill Griffin • Chris Montesano • Joan Montesano • Teka Childress • Pat Coy • Larry Purcell • Dick Dieter • Maggie Louden • Joe Zarrella • Fr. Richard McSorley • Jeff Dietrich • Karl Meyer

15. Families in the Worker
Marcia Timmel • Paul Magno • Terry Bennett-Cauchon • Lynn Lassalle-Klein • Bob Lassalle-Klein • Justine Murphy • Monica Cornell • Tom Cornell • Pat Jordan • Kathleen Jordan • Kathy Shuh-Ries • Patti McKee • Jim Levinson • Louise Cochran • David Specht • Claire Pearson • Claire Schaeffer-Duffy • Scott Schaeffer-Duffy • Chuck Quilty • Tom Lewis • Chris Montesano • Joan Montesano

16. Catholic Worker Kids
Kate Walsh • Kenna Lee Meyer • Becky Delany • Joachim Zwick • Chris Shepherd

Illustrations

Part IV: Doing the Work

17. Miracles at Martin’s: Martin de Porres in San Francisco
Carole Arett • Charlie

18. Snapshots: Larry Purcell of Redwood City, California

19. The Logic of Grace: Davenport, Iowa
Mike Garvey • Margaret Quigley • Garvey Bob Chaps

20. A Family Affair: The Cordaros of Des Moines
Angela Cordaro • Fr. Frank Cordaro • Tom Cordaro

21. Inner City Solitude: Virginia Druhe of St. Louis

22. Uptown: St. Francis of Assisi in Chicago
Fr. Jack Keehan • Jim Eder • Denise Plunkett • Mark Miller

23. Light and Shadow: David Stein of Chicago

24. Laughter and Learning: Angelus House in Toronto
Charlie Angus • Lauren Griffin

25. Unity and Diversity: Syracuse Communities
Dorothy Day House • Unity Kitchen • Unity Acres in Orwell

26. Across the Country
San Jose, California • Las Vegas, Nevada • Orange County, California • Waterbury, Connecticut • Chicago, Illinois: St. Catherine of Genoa • Washington, D.C. • Alderson, West Virginia • Phoenix, Arizona • Houston, Texas • Bloomington, Illinois • Boston, Massachusetts

An Interlude: Spinning a Web

Part V: The Catholic Worker

27. Spirituality: A Roundtable Discussion
Jim Forest • Fr. Mike Baxter • Larry Ray-Keil • Louise Cochran • Fr. Tom Lumpkin

28. The Worker and the Church: A Roundtable Discussion
Fr. Frank Cordaro • Gary Donatelli • Bill Griffin • Steve Soucy • Pat Coy • Marc Ellis • Kassie Temple • Eileen Egan • Fr. Richard McSorley • Chris Delany • Margaret Quigley Garvey • Mike Garvey

29. The Controversy over Homosexuality
Chris Montesano • Gary Donatelli • Peggy Scherer • Bill Griffin • David Buer • Jonathan Kirkendall • Larry Ray-Keil • Richard Cleaver • Gary Olivero • Barbara Blaine • Fr. Bernie Gilgun

30. Abortion
Marcia Timmel • Fr. Frank Cordaro • Sr. Char Madigan • Sr. Anna Koop

31. Feminism, the Worker, and the Church: A Roundtable Discussion
Sr. Char Madigan • Joan Montesano • Maggie Louden • Ellen Rehg • Darla Bradley • Claire Schaeffer-Duffy • Sr. Anna Koop • Gary Olivero • Barbara Blaine • Terry Bennett-Cauchon • Tina Sipula

Epilogue
Appendix A: Persons Interviewed
Appendix B: Houses of Hospitality
Appendix C: 1992 Aims and Means of the Catholic Worker Movement
Select Bibliography
Index

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About the Author(s)

Rosalie Riegle Troester is Professor of English at Saginaw Valley State University in Michigan.

Subject Categories

Religion

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