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Narrative of Sojourner Truth   Leave a comment


Soujourner Truth

Location 1389 – Through all the scenes of her eventful life may be traced the energy of a naturally powerful mind—the fearlessness and childlike simplicity of one untrammeled by education or conventional customs—purity of character—an unflinching adherence to principle—and a native enthusiasm, which, under different circumstances, might easily have produced another Joan of Arc. With all her fervor, and enthusiasm, and speculation, her religion is not tinctured in the least with gloom. No doubt, no hesitation, no despondency, spreads a cloud over her soul; but all is bright, clear, positive, and at times ecstatic. Her trust is in God, and from him she looks for good, and not evil. She feels that ‘perfect love casteth out fear.’

159 – He again, as usual, bewailed his loneliness,—spoke in tones of anguish of his many children, saying, “They are all taken away from me! I have now not one to give me a cup of cold water—why should I live and not die?”

212 – She had no idea God had any knowledge of her thoughts, save what she told him; or heard her prayers, unless they were spoken audibly.

248 – Her master insisted that she could do as much work as half a dozen common people, and do it well, too;

347 – ‘The Lord only knows how many times I let my children go hungry, rather than take secretly the bread I liked not to ask for.

411 – ‘there is but one master; and He who is your master is my master.’

615 – She believed He not only saw, but noted down all her actions in a great book, even as her master kept a record of whatever he wished not to forget. But she had no idea that God knew a thought of hers till she had uttered it aloud.

634 – She related to God, in minute detail, all her troubles and sufferings, inquiring, as she proceeded, ‘Do you think that’s right, God?’ and closed by begging to be delivered from the evil, whatever it might be.

634 – but if He would give her a new place, and a good master and mistress, she could and would be good; and she expressly stipulated, that she would be good one day to show God how good she would be all of the time, when He should surround her with the right influences, and she should be delivered from the temptations that then so sorely beset her. But, alas! when night came, and she became conscious that she had yielded to all her temptations, and entirely failed of keeping her word with God, having prayed and promised one hour, and fallen into the sins of anger and profanity the next, the mortifying reflection weighed on her mind, and blunted her enjoyment.

634 – she was so happy and satisfied, that God was entirely forgotten. Why should her thoughts turn to Him, who was only known to her as a help in trouble? She had no trouble now; her every prayer had been answered in every minute particular.

701 – ‘shall I lie again to God? I have told him nothing but lies; and shall I speak again, and tell another lie to God?’ She could not; and now she began to wish for someone to speak to God for her. Then a space seemed opening between her and God, and she felt that if someone, who was worthy in the sight of heaven, would but plead for her in their own name, and not let God know it came from her, who was so unworthy, God might grant it.

723 – She contemplated the unapproachable barriers that existed between herself and the great of this world, as the world calls greatness,

726 – when she heard him spoken of, she said mentally—‘What! others know Jesus! I thought no one knew Jesus but me!’ and she felt a sort of jealousy, lest she should be robbed of her newly found treasure.

742 –  ‘Let others say what they will of the efficacy of prayer, I believe in it, and I shall pray. Thank God! Yes, I shall always pray,’

747 – God, you know how much I am distressed, for I have told you again and again. Now, God, help me get my son. If you were in trouble, as I am, and I could help you, as you can me, think I wouldn’t do it? Yes, God, you know I would do it.’ ‘Oh, God, you know I have no money, but you can make the people do for me, and you must make the people do for me. I will never give you peace till you do, God.’ ‘Oh, God, make the people hear me—don’t let them turn me off, without hearing and helping me.’

764 – he was dependent on the ‘world’s cold charity,’ and died in a poorhouse.

885 – the peculiar feeling of her hand—the bony hardness so just like mine? and yet I could not know she was my sister; and now I see she looked so like my mother.’ And Isabella wept, and not alone; Sophia wept, and the strong man, Michael, mingled his tears with theirs. ‘Oh Lord,’ inquired Isabella, ‘what is this slavery, that it can do such dreadful things? what evil can it not do?’

1017 – This trait in our American character has been frequently noticed by foreign travelers. One English lady remarks that she discovered, in course of conversation with a Southern married gentleman, that a colored girl slept in his bedroom, in which also was his wife; and when he saw that it occasioned some surprise, he remarked, ‘What would he do if he wanted a glass of water in the night?’

1132 – She said, ‘she never could find out that the rich had any religion. If I had been rich and accomplished, I could; for the rich could always find religion in the rich, and I could find it among the poor.

1167 – that every pedestrian in the world is not a vagabond, and that it is a dangerous thing to compel any one to receive that hospitality from the vicious and abandoned which they should have received from us,—as thousands can testify, who have thus been caught in the snares of the wicked.

1204 – when she was examining the Scriptures, she wished to hear them without comment; but if she employed adult persons to read them to her, and she asked them to read a passage over again, they invariably commenced to explain, by giving her their version of it; and in this way, they tried her feelings exceedingly. In consequence of this, she ceased to ask adult persons to read the Bible to her, and substituted children in their stead.

1255 – They appeared to her to be doing their utmost to agitate and excite the people, who were already too much excited; and when she had listened till her feelings would let her listen silently no longer, she arose and addressed the preachers. The following are specimens of her speech:— ‘Here you are talking about being “changed in the twinkling of an eye.” If the Lord should come, he’d change you to nothing! for there is nothing to you. ‘You seem to be expecting to go to some parlor away up somewhere, and when the wicked have been burnt, you are coming back to walk in triumph over their ashes—this is to be your New Jerusalem!! Now, I can’t see anything so very nice in that, coming back to such a muss as that will be, a world covered with the ashes of the wicked! Besides, if the Lord comes and burns—as you say he will—I am not going away; I am going to stay here and stand the fire, like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego! And Jesus will walk with me through the fire, and keep me from harm. Nothing belonging to God can burn, any more than God himself; such shall have no need to go away to escape the fire! No, I shall remain. Do you tell me that God’s children can’t stand fire?’ And her manner and tone spoke louder than words, saying, ‘It is absurd to think so!’

Narrative of Sojourner Truth
by Soujourner Truth, Olive Gilbert

The Elephant Man: A Study In Human Dignity   Leave a comment



Pg. 2 – Hideously deformed, malodorous, for the most part maltreated, constantly in pain, lame, fed the merest scraps, exhibited as a grotesque monster at circuses, fairs, and wherever else a penny might be turned, the object of constant expressions of horror and disgust, it might have been expected that “the Elephant Man” would have grown into a creature detesting all human beings, bitter, awkward, difficult in his relations with others, ungentle, unfeeling, aggressive, and unlovable.

31 – What most he dreaded were the open street and the gaze of his fellow-men.

34 – He had no childhood. He had no boyhood. He had never experienced pleasure. He knew nothing of the joy of living nor of the fun of things. His sole idea of happiness was to creep into the dark and hide. Shut up alone in a booth, awaiting the next exhibition, how mocking must have sounded the laughter and merriment of the boys and girls outside who were enjoying the “fun of the fair”!

34,35 – Those who are interested in the evolution of character might speculate as to the effect of this brutish life upon a sensitive and intelligent man. It would be reasonable to surmise that he would become a spiteful and malignant misanthrope, swollen with venom and filled with hatred of his fellow-men, or, on the other hand, that he would degenerate into a despairing melancholic on the verge of idiocy. Merrick, however, was no such being. He had passed through the fire and had come out unscathed. His troubles had ennobled him. He showed himself to be a gentle, affectionate and lovable creature, as amiable as a happy woman, free from any trace of cynicism or resentment, without a grievance and without an unkind word for anyone. I have never heard him complain. I have never heard him deplore his ruined life or resent the treatment he had received at the hands of callous keepers.

35 – He had no possessions. His sole belongings, besides his clothes and some books, were the monstrous cap and the cloak. He was a wanderer, a pariah and an outcast.

36 – He had read about blind asylums in the newspapers and was attracted by the thought of being among people who could not see.

38 – As he let go her hand he bent his head on his knees and sobbed until I thought he would never cease. The interview was over. He told me afterwards that this was the first woman who had ever smiled at him, and the first woman, in the whole of his life, who had shaken hands with him.

39 – He could weep, but he could not smile.

39 – The Queen paid Merrick many visits and sent him every year a Christmas card with a message in her own handwriting. On one occasion she sent him a signed photograph of herself. Merrick, quite overcome, regarded it as a sacred object and would hardly allow me to touch it. He cried over it, and after it was framed had it put up in his room as a kind of icon.

41 – imagine the feelings of such a youth when he saw nothing but a look of horror creep over the face of every girl whose eyes met his. I fancy when he talked of life among the blind there was a half-formed idea in his mind that he might be able to win the affection of a woman if only she were without eyes to see.

43,44 – I could not help comparing him with a man of his own age in the stalls. This satiated individual was bored to distraction, would look wearily at the stage from time to time and then yawn as if he had not slept for nights; while at the same time Merrick was thrilled by a vision that was almost beyond his comprehension. Merrick talked of this pantomime for weeks and weeks. To him, as to a child with the faculty of make-believe, everything was real; the palace was the home of kings, the princess was of royal blood, the fairies were as undoubted as the children in the street, while the dishes at the banquet were of unquestionable gold. He did not like to discuss it as a play but rather as a vision of some actual world. When this mood possessed him he would say: “I wonder what the prince did after he left?” or “Do you think that poor man is still in the dungeon?” and so on and so on.

46 – He often said to me that he wished he could lie down to sleep “like other people.”

46 – As a specimen of humanity, Merrick was ignoble and repulsive; but the spirit of Merrick, if it could be seen in the form of the living, would assume the figure of an upstanding and heroic man, smooth-browed and clean of limb, and with eyes that flashed undaunted courage.

63 – Merrick died trying to be what he had ached to be all his life: normal.

79 – A short definition of mental health is the ability to love, to work, to play, and to think soundly. By love is meant the ability to communicate to the other, by demonstrative acts, one’s profound involvement in their welfare, such that you give them all the support, succor, stimulation, and encouragement for their healthy growth and development; that they can always depend upon you standing by; that you will never commit the supreme treason of letting them down when they are in need; that you will always be there to respond to their need; that you will help them fulfill themselves by nurturing and encouraging them to realize all the potentialities that are within them for becoming good and loving human beings, who will live as if to live and love were one, loving others more than one loves oneself.

80 – The ability to work is another essential component of mental health. Work is purposeful activity, mental or physical effort designed to do or make something. In Merrick’s development it is highly probable that he worked well and enjoyed it, judging from his skill in the creation of a model cathedral from pieces of cardboard and colored papers. This is really quite beautiful, and when one considers it was all done with one hand, quite remarkable in and of itself.

81 – “It is not that the Englishman can’t feel – it is that he is afraid to feel. He has been taught at…school that feeling is bad form. He must not express great joy or sorrow….He must bottle up his emotions, or let them out only on a very special occasion.”

83 – There is an ancient Middle Eastern saying that since God could not be everywhere he created mothers.

103 – “I am happy every hour of the day” is how he put it.

105,106 – It is the “freak,” the “monster,” who in a profound sense is truly the least monstrous among us.

107 – In a very real way, most of us are disabled, more or less. We are handicapped by, among other things, our failure to recognize the kind of human beings we are able to become. The tragedy for so many of us lies in the difference between what we were potentially capable of becoming and what we have been caused to become by our socializers and our dysfunctional society. If we will understand this, and understand how we came to be this way, there is hope that we may yet be able to save ourselves.

107 – In their reactive revulsion, fear and awkwardness, they compound the injuries the disabled have already suffered. It is often easier for the disabled to deal with their problems than it is to deal with the customary reactions toward them.

The Elephant Man: A Study In Human Dignity
by Ashley Montagu

Posted March 30, 2015 by Mr. Merrick in Books

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The Heavenly Man   Leave a comment



13 – If God should choose to raise up others for His purpose and never to use us again we would have nothing to complain about.”

27 – I had just one simple prayer: “Lord, please give me a Bible. Amen.

49 – The only safe way was to cut a hole through the ice on the river and baptize the new believers in the freezing water during the night while the police were sleeping.

106 – Many Chinese preachers have been forsaken by their wives while they were in prison for the Gospel. One brother, Li, was sentenced to many years in prison. The moment the sentence was read out in the courtroom his wife stood up and shouted, “I divorce this man!” I didn’t want to do such a thing.

Pg. 120 – The guards came to examine me. They tore off my undergarments to see if I had the disease. They thought the disease had originated from me because I’d spent so much time lying in human waste. They found I was the only prisoner free from the affliction!

120 – The leader of the cell, who had suffered so much from the disease, hated me even more when he saw I’d escaped the affliction. He took my blanket and used it for himself. In its place, he wrapped me in his own disease –ridden blanket, covered in blood, dirt and pus that had oozed from his sores. But the Lord protected me, and I still did not contract the disease.

132 – “You are a fake! You pretended to be dying every day. I’m alive and well in prison even though I’ve killed and raped women. You came to the prison because you believe in Jesus and you’re dying like a sick dog.”

136 – The government family planning officer told me, “Your husband will never get out of prison. Do yourself a favor and don’t let this child come into the world.” They ordered me to return a few days later and they would give me an abortion.

141 – “Brothers, before we believed in Jesus we were just like him. We too were like demons. But Jesus rescued us all when our souls were about to die. We need to have mercy on this man and treat him as if he was Jesus himself.”

163 – In my exhausted condition the devil had convinced me I didn’t need to pray any more, that I could pray to the Lord in my dreams while I slept!

167 – When we returned to our rooms every evening, many of us had badly swollen legs and shoulders from the hard labour. On many occasions I didn’t even have the strength to climb up to my bunk, so I just slept on the floor at the foot of the bed.

172 – to celebrate Christmas. I knelt down on the dirty floor and prayed, “Lord, we only have this dirty toilet to worship you in. But you understand because you left the glory of heaven and were born in a dirty manger.

202 – Several guards commented, “Look, this criminal is even happier than we are, and we are free!

211 – She told the other children, ‘Isaac and his family stupidly believe in Jesus.’ My classmates mock me and say, ‘Your father is a dirty criminal who deserves to be in prison.’”

227 – While I was in prison each man received just 2.50 yuan (about 30 cents) per month, so we could buy small items like paper and toothpaste. But even then the believers set aside a tithe from our meager income.

233 – these same mission organizations started putting other books at the tops of the bags of Bibles. These were books about one particular denomination’s theology, or teaching that focused on certain aspects of God’s Word. This, I believe was the start of disunity among many of China’s house churches.

246 – A young guard carried me around on certain occasions. He saw I was in great pain, and knew I’d received no medical treatment. This young man sympathetically told me, “I am seeing a man truly suffer for Jesus’ name.”

287 – We shouldn’t pray for a lighter load to carry, but a stronger back to endure!

288 – They say we should stay in China and win our own country before we go out. To this illogical argument I respond with a simple question, “Then why does your country send missionaries? Is everyone in your country saved?”

290 – We teach how to witness for the Lord under any circumstance, on trains or buses, or even in the back of a police van on our way to the execution ground.

295 – I presumed the Western church was strong and vibrant because it had brought the gospel to my country with such incredible faith and tenacity. Many missionaries had shown a powerful example by laying down their lives for the sake of Jesus. On many occasions I’ve struggled while speaking in Western churches. There seems to be something missing that leaves me feeling terrible inside.

299 – Many Christians have also asked me why miracles and signs and wonders are so prevalent in China, but not so evident in the West. In the West you have so much. You have insurance for everything. In a way, you don’t need God.

310,311 – I believe when suffering and pain increases, sinning decreases…How we mature as a Christian largely depends on the attitude we have when we’re faced with suffering…The Lord wants us to embrace suffering as a friend…When you learn these lessons, there is nothing left that the world can do to you.

312 – When people hear my testimony they often say, “You must have had a terrible time when you were in prison.” I respond, “What are you talking about? I was with Jesus and had overwhelming joy and peace in His intimate presence.”

313 – Everyone in this world is a slave. They’re either slaves to sin, or slaves of Christ.

The Heavenly Man
by Brother Yun and Paul Hattaway

Posted March 24, 2015 by Mr. Merrick in Books

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The Roman Socrates   Leave a comment



11 – How do you think I can work with that row going on?’ An affectionate laugh accompanies the reply ‘Is it as bad as that! As far as I’m concerned, so long as they keep free from sin, they can chop wood on my back if they feel like it.’

29 – a home in which he remained as long as possible since it gave him the greatest possible freedom of movement, and because it gave him all he wanted: a position that just kept him from dying of hunger.

30 – his food, a daily handful of corn and olives;…

30 – At the end of his life the last spiritual book he had read to him was The Fathers of the Desert, a book he always considered a manual of perfection;…

40 – the pilgrims themselves, their devotion having made them vagabonds, resembled tramps rather than the devout tourists whom we call pilgrims today.

72 – the Philippian ideal; neither speeches nor arguments can awaken a living faith in those for whom Christianity has lost its meaning.

75 – It was the most difficult thing in the world to persuade him to take a little rest, delegate some of his duties or add something to a diet which made that of a Trappist, by comparison, seem positively festive.

75 – It is a mystery how he could spend so long there in winter without freezing to death.

83 – Such things were of almost daily occurrence, and were so well known that one of his younger disciples, when tempted to sin, was able to resist by merely saying to himself, ‘No, Father Philip would know at once.’

85 – he sent Baronius to a wineshop to sample all the wines before buying half a bottle; to make it all the worse he had to offer a gold piece in payment and ask for change.

87 – The only antidote to the deadly seriousness into which pride can lead us is, when all is said and done, the joyful simplicity of the children of God.

The Roman Socrates
by Rev. Louis Bouyer
Translated by Michael Day

Posted March 23, 2015 by Mr. Merrick in Books, Saints

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Story of a Soul   Leave a comment



27 – ‘How is it that God can be present in a small host?’ The little one said: ‘That is not surprising, God is all powerful.’ What does all powerful mean?’ ‘It means He can do what He wants!’

27 – “Here, my little sisters, choose; I’m giving you all this.” Celine stretched out her hand and took a little ball of wool that pleased her. After a moment’s reflection, I stretched out mine saying: “I choose all!” and I took the basket without further ceremony.

27 – I fear only one thing: to keep my own will…

28 – The little one will be all right too, for she wouldn’t tell a lie for all the gold in the world.

71,72 – When reading the accounts of the patriotic deeds of French heroines, especially the Venerable JOAN OF ARC, I had a great desire to imitate them; and it seemed I felt within me the same burning zeal with which they were animated, the same heavenly inspiration.

72 – I don’t count on my merits since I have none, but I trust in Him who is Virtue and Holiness.

74 – the eternal riches that one can so easily amass each day, and what a misfortune it was to pass by without so much as stretching forth one’s hand to take them.

77 – Had not Therese asked Him to take away her liberty, for her liberty frightened her?

84 – I have heard it said that one cannot meet a pure soul who loves more than a repentant soul; ah! how I would wish to give the lie to this statement!

85,86 – things it would have been better for me not to hear because vanity slips so easily into the heart. One lady said I had pretty hair; another, when she was leaving, believing she was not overheard, asked who the very beautiful young girl was. These words, all the more flattering since they were not spoken in my presence, left in my soul a pleasurable impression that showed me clearly how much I was filled with self-love.

87 – I knew how to speak only to Him; conversations with creatures, even pious conversations, fatigued my soul. I felt it was far more valuable to speak to God than to speak about Him, for there is so much self-love intermingled with spiritual conversations!

99 – I heard talk of a great criminal just condemned to death for some horrible crimes; everything pointed to the fact that he would die impenitent. I wanted at all costs to prevent him from falling into hell, and to attain my purpose I employed every means imaginable.

140 – Ah! poor women, how they are misunderstood! And yet they love God in much larger numbers than men do and during the Passion of Our Lord, women had more courage than the apostles since they braved the insults of the soldiers and dared to dry the adorable Face of Jesus. It is undoubtedly because of this that He allows misunderstanding to be their lot on earth, since HE chose it for Himself.

165 – “The Lord knows our weakness, that He is mindful that we are but dust and ashes.”

179 – Jesus has no need of books or teachers to instruct souls; He teaches without the noise of words.

188 – If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for the world is mine, and the fullness thereof.

189 – …for the same God declares He has no need to tell us when He is hungry did not fear to beg for a little water from the Samaritan woman. He was thirsty. But when He said: “Give me to drink, it was the love of His poor creature the Creator of the universe was seeking. He was thirsty for love.

209 – people want exceptions everywhere on earth, but God alone hasn’t the right to make any exceptions!

221 – when especially the devil tries to place before the eyes of my soul the faults of such and such a Sister who is less attractive to me, I hasten to search out her virtues, her good intentions; I tell myself that even if I did see her fall once, she could easily have won a great number of victories which she is hiding through humility, and that even what appears to me as a fault can very easily be an act of virtue because of her intention.

222 – for there is no artist who doesn’t love to receive praise for his works, and Jesus, the Artist of souls, is happy when we don’t stop at the exterior, but, penetrating into the inner sanctuary where He chooses to dwell, we admire its beauty.

228 – Truly, when one knows very well that never will the time one lends ever be returned, one would prefer to say: “I give it to you.” This would satisfy self-love, for giving is a more generous act than lending, and then we make the Sister feel we don’t depend on her services.

234 – If it happens that I think or say something that is pleasing to my Sisters, I find it very natural that they take it as a good that belongs to them. This thought belongs to the Holy Spirit and not to me since St. Paul says we cannot, without the Spirit of Love, give the name of “Father” to our Father in heaven.

234 – When they see a soul more enlightened than others, immediately they conclude that Jesus loves them less than this soul, and that they cannot be called to the same perfection. Since when has the Lord no longer the right to make use of one of His creatures to dispense necessary nourishment to souls whom He loves?

258 – “Give me a lever and a fulcrum and I will lift the world.” What Archimedes was not able to obtain, for his request was not directed by God and was only made from a material viewpoint, the saints have obtained in all its fullness. The Almighty has given them as fulcrum:HIMSELF ALONE; as lever: PRAYER which burns with a fire of love.

Story of a Soul – Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux
Translated by John Clarke, O.C.D.

They Called Her the Baroness   Leave a comment


They Called Her the Baroness: The Life of Catherine de Hueck Doherty

8 – Few in St. Petersburg understood her altruistic bent. Teachers scolded her because manual labor made her hands rough and callused. “Wait a minute and listen,” Emma insisted, and when she played the piano, “her experience of having gone to the poor, the deep cries of peasants that nobody heard, was in her music.”

14 – He insisted Catherine eat the food of the country, follow the customs, and under no circumstances, he warned, should she say, “But in Russia we do it thus and so.”

19 – (Catherine) …was so moved at the realism of a crucifix that she pried the corpus off every cross she could find, placing the figures in her doll’s bed in an attempt to take away the pain.

28 – Several times during the year, Russians examined their consciences, asked forgiveness of everyone in the household, and went to church to confess their sins to a priest.

35 – “I have seen a field green with grass one day and literally stripped of every blade the next by people who had nothing else to eat. I have seen towns without a single roof on the houses because the straw of the thatching was taken to be boiled and eaten.”

37 – “I used to think that it would be an act of mercy to be allowed to kill some of the poor patients who were brought to us having half their faces blown away and limbs hanging off,” Catherine confessed, but she changed her mind when she saw how these men “showed dauntless bravery in their sufferings.”

47 – In this book you will write day by day what has happened to you. As you know I have affection for what is mine, whether it be much or little. You will hide no bad things or even thoughts from me and I hope I will never find them, in this year, in which you start your diary. – Your Boris

67,68 – He believed that one discovered God through prayer, through nature, and through the performance of ordinary duties and service to others. Tagore’s ideas reflected all Catherine had learned about God from her parents and the nuns, and in her naive enthusiasm, she impulsively asked, “How is it possible that you are not a Christian?” “Child,” Tagore replied, “I am waiting for you to become one.” The words stung, but it remained a lesson in real Christianity that Catherine never forgot.

88 – “The custom of humoring yourself, of indulging in small, unimportant acts that you believed essential to your happiness and well-being. You got rid of those,” another performer confessed. “You forgot all your funny inhibitions about what you could and could not eat.

102 – “Has God saved me from death in Russia so that I should return to bourgeois society…”

112 – My small attempts to be good look like perfection because no one else around me is trying.

115 – Life is just a joke as far as I’m concerned. And my whole soul longs for death. Yet, today, for the first time I was a little afraid of death. For what have I to bring to Christ! Empty hands – empty heart – I look back on my life and have to cry. A little good strewn here and there and everywhere, lost, submerged in the pride of heart, the lack of real charity, of love for my neighbor. And so I have to forget what has gone before and start anew as if life just started today.

123 – “We are to blame who allow conditions to exist which develop a down-trodden class!”

136 – Catherine told stories about children spitting on a crucifix during the Communist Sunday School, and about a young man who joined a Communist cell at the university “because I cannot reconcile my father’s church going with his treatment of his factory hands, because I cannot reconcile my mother’s church going and her treatment of her maid.”

167 – “No white folks live here, Lady,” the janitor told her. When Catherine replied that she was Russian, the janitor assumed she meant Communist, and knowing that Communists accepted blacks when no other white people would, he led Catherine to a tiny unfurnished apartment on the third floor.

178 – Catherine expressed surprise at the sausages, butter, and pastries Father Dlussky offered at tea time, he admitted they were artificial substitutes, created by German chemists from codfish, which was cheap and plentiful.

190 – You have found misery in our dirty neglected streets, in our shocking obscene slums? You are surprised? You are horrified? You blame Harlem for all this? Who made harlem wicked, if it is wicked? Go ask City Hall. Go ask the respectable Christians of Manhattan and the Bronx, Catholics included. Go ask the shopkeepers who fleece them. If harlem is bad, Manhattan is a thousand times worse..

199,200 – As a young priest, Sheil served as a prison chaplain, and he saw that delinquent boys were not evil in themselves, but had become victims of an evil society filled with greed, avarice, selfishness, and intolerance, a society that shirked its responsibility to young people.

233 – Doubts plagued Eddie. “What are you going to do now?” a mocking voice inside of him Taunted. “No job. No dough, unless your Russian has it. No friends. No apostolate…And probably not even a boiled potato or an onion in the house. Why don’t you turn that damn machine around, and go back to a normal life in Chicago or New York?”

256 – Even if we’re in 10,000 mortal sins, He loves us.

270 – Truly this is a tragedy beyond words…to become a dark disciple…to make a god of oneself. No wonder, therefore, that mental illness and emotional disturbance fill modern man, and send him scurrying like a cornered rat to all kinds of escapes including tranquilizers. Emptiness and boredom are his milieu. They spur him, now to a frantic frenzy of useless activity, now to a withdrawal from all reality. Symbolically this adds up to a man-made hell…

They Called Her the Baroness: The Life of Catherine de Hueck Doherty
by Lorene Hanley Duquin

Damien by Aldyth Morris   Leave a comment


Damien is a 1976 one person show about Father Damien by Aldyth Morris.

Damien is a 1976 one person show about Father Damien by Aldyth Morris. The play was originally performed in Hawaii by Terence Knapp and has had numerous professional and amateur productions since that time.

The play is set in 1936 when Damien’s body is being transported from Molokai to his native Belgium. Damien’s story is retold through a series of flashbacks.

Damien featuring Terence Knapp was broadcast nationally on PBS in the United States in 1978 and again in 1986 on American Playhouse. The broadcast received a number of recognitions including a Peabody Award.

I imagine this film would be a great fit for those of us who have fond childhood memories of those old TV shows we use to watch while lounging around on the couch. Shows such as Wild America with Marty Stouffer, This Old House with Bob Vila, The Joy of Painting, or Mr. Rodgers. However this particular piece is likely to affect you more than the charming way Mr. Vila performed his home restorations.

Note: The DVD and VHS copies of this film appear to be quite rare. I found a used DVD on ebay last year, but do not know where else they can be found at decent prices. Amazon has some sellers with low priced VHS copies along with some reviews.

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