Thursday, July 24, 2003

"I'm not trying to change the world. I'm trying to keep the world from changing me."

Ammon Hennacy, one of the more memorable characters of the early Catholic Worker movement, founder of the Joe Hill House of Hospitality in Salt Lake City, and unfortunately lapsed godson of the Ven. Dorothy of New York City, was born 110 years ago this day.

During his imprisonment for conscientious objection during the First World War, he became a believer in "the one-man revolution," a belief that eventually led him into the Catholic Church, and which hounded him for the rest of his life, even after he'd fallen away.

In his words:

Gradually I came to gain a glimpse of what Jesus meant when he said that the Kingdom of God must be in everyone.....To change the world by bullets or ballots was a useless procedure. Therefore the only revolution worthwhile was the one-man revolution within the heart. Each one would make this by himself and not need to wait on a majority.
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