Dorothy Day was almost a Methodist…

As strange as it may seem, Dorothy Day might have been a Methodist.  I just started reading The Long Loneliness: The Autobiography of the legendary Catholic Social Activist, and what has been surprising is about how often she talks about John Wesley and  her experience with the Methodist Church. 

Ultimatley, one of the most important Chrisitan figures of 20th century America began her faith journey by rejecting the Methodist church. 

…I had to choose the world to what I wanted to belong. I did not want to belong to the Epworth League which some of my classmates joined.   As a little child, the happy peace of the Methodists who lived next door to me appealed to me deeply.   Now, the same happiness seemed to be a disregard of the misery of the world (page 41).

I find this passage important for the future of the United Methodist Church.  The argument has been made and continues to be made that the Methodist Church is in decline because of its liberalism.  Though more of a hunch than a thesis, Dorothy Day’s epxerience tells us that something else is at play; the Methodist’s “disregard of the misery of the world.”


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