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On Pilgrimage – March 1957

Summary: A detailed account of her attendance as an observer at the Communist Party Convention. She identifies with their ends–a just social order–but not their means or beliefs (violence and atheism). Prods Catholics to “hard study” of those working for peace and justice, learning with her “of incorporating social thinking into the works of mercy.” Keywords: prison (The Catholic Worker, March 1957, 3, 6. DDLW #718).

The Communist Party Convention had been in session two full days as I came home from Mass that Monday morning. I had passed a man lying dying on the Bowery pitifully bony and dirty. A policeman stood over him waiting for the ambulance and the priest. When I got to our door at St. Joseph’s house there was the usual line of men waiting for Roger to give out clothes. The women and children come into the house but there is so little room that the men have to stand outside. Then, suddenly the line was disrupted by one man falling back suddenly into the arms of a tall Negro who was strong enough to hold him until he could lay him out gently on the pavement just inside the fence. As he lay stretched out there in the naked grey morning light, he ceased to breathe.

“He’s dead. That man’s dead. Nothing you can do for him any more,” the Negro cried. “I just caught him and he died.”

But there was something we could do. Charlie called the priest from Nativity Church and Fr. Hoodak arrived before the ambulance or the police. Kneeling there in the dirty little yard behind the trash cans at the fence he anointed him and gave him absolution. A man with a gunny sack of empty bottles strung over his shoulder stopped to look. “He’s a cook. Works in the arcade over on the Bowery,” he commented. “Don’t know his name.” And he hurried on.

Another man commented. “He just got off the Island. Them are prison pants and socks and shirt.”

So casual is life and death on the Bowery.

Around the corner, three hundred delegates to the 16th annual convention of the Communist Party of America meeting at the Chateau Gardens on Houston St., were so intently serious on this present life and what they wanted to make of it, that fifty of them are past or present defendants under the Smith Act and eleven of the National leaders are now serving terms. A strange convention indeed, unlike any other political convention ever held in this country.

When a reporter asked me whether I thought I could be an objective observer, I told him that of course I could not. “Atheism is an integral part of Marxism,” as Lenin said, and as a Catholic I know that fundamental opposition between the Church and Communism. “Why are you here?” another asked, and I could only say that I was present because I had been invited, and it was in part curiosity and interest that led me there. “Ask for nothing, refuse nothing,” St. John of the Cross said.

No one who ever read “Three Who Made a Revolution,” by Bertram Wolff, could fail to be interested in the historic struggle which is now going to in the Communist Party throughout the world, and certainly from any point of view, it was a privilege to be invited to attend as an observer. The Press had been excluded. One long narrow room had been turned over to them and reporters, photographers, radio newscasters had turned out in such numbers that there was only room to stand while they questioned Si Gerson, who was in charge of publicity and who promised to bring them copies of speeches and other news releases. As for their admittance, the delegates at the state conventions had voted to exclude the press, on the ground that they had not had fair coverage in the past, and they did not wish to risk the livelihood, or the freedom, of those three hundred and fifty delegates who were attending from 28 states around the country.

Other members of the observers committee were A. J. Muste, Secretary Emeritus, Fellowship of Reconciliation; Roy Finch, Chairman, War Resisters League; Stringfellow Barr, Lecturer and publicist; Lyle Tatum, Peace Secretary for Middle Atlantic Region, American Friends Service Committee; Bayard Rustin, Executive Secretary, War Resisters League; Alfred Hassler, Director of Publications, Fellowship of Reconciliation and George Willoughby, Director, Central Committee For Conscientious Objectors.

Friday night before the convention, Helene Iswolsky had spoken at The Catholic Worker on the present trends in Soviet literature. She said that now finally Dostoievsky and Tolstoi were being printed and discussed, that the literature even of exiles living in France and other countries was now being published, that such a poet as Pasternak, after a silence of twenty years, had eight poems in the last issue of The Banner, one of the most famous of the Soviet magazines. A recent best seller which ran serially in a popular Soviet magazine told of the lives of Soviet families and was entitled “Not by Bread Alone!”

“It is not just by a study of politics that one learns about a people, but by reading their literature,” she said. Helene Iswolsky teaches Russian at Fordham and has written a number of books on Russian literature and spirituality. She was a friend of Berdyaev in France, and became a Roman Catholic in her adult years. She attends the Liturgy at St. Michael’s chapel on Mulberry Street where I too am going this Sunday morning, to pray for Russia, to pray for the delegates at the Convention, to pray for all those I meet and hear today.

Waking this morning, I thought of the criticism I would get from Catholics for having the temerity to attend this convention, and I thought, “enemies of the cross of Christ,” that is of course how Communists are considered. How can I consort with these enemies? But I have felt the absence of God in many another milieu in my life. I felt it of course, the six months I lived in Mexico under the persecution in 1929. I felt it when I worked in Hollywood for a brief three months. I felt it in the midst of non-Catholic friends, who are indifferent to the things of God, and among Protestants who think of the Roman Catholic Church as the Anti-christ. “I was brought up on Fox’s book of martyrs,” one woman told me ruefully, explaining her hostility to the Church. “After all, you’re not a real Catholic, not like the political Catholics I have met,” another young woman said to me recently in Lancaster.

I can only say, “I am a daughter of the Church,” repeating the words of St. Teresa of Avila. It is as a daughter of the Church that I do these things. I might add as a working journalist also and the two are not in opposition, muddled as our motives often are.

“Enemies of the Cross of Christ.” The phrase of St. Paul echoed in my mind. Certainly, not enemies of the Cross, I thought, as I reviewed in my mind the case of Dorothy Blumberg, whom I had met the day before and brought home to supper at St. Joseph’s house. She had spent two years in Alderson Federal penitentiary in West Virginia, and it was interesting to hear her experiences. She was convicted as one of the “top” Communists in Baltimore and has served her sentence of two years. Her husband is under conviction now, and his is one of the “membership” cases, those convictions upheld by higher courts and now waiting the U.S. Supreme court decision. Under such a ruling, if it were adverse, every one of the 350 attending the convention as delegates could be arrested and sent away to detention camps, those detention camps which we have noted in the C.W. as ready for people who oppose the present regime. Opposing this capitalist-industrial system, as we also do, we may find ourselves in even closer contact yet with these our brothers, the Communists.

Dorothy Blumberg, is also a grandmother, and works in a florist wholesale shop as a bookkeeper. She is little and trim, her hair is grey, her skin young and her eyes warm and sparkling. She has a loud clear voice and seems to be well used to speaking. Her husband, one of the delegates, was put in charge of the “observers” and sat at the table with us.

They are only two of the one hundred and sixty in all who have been indicted, 30 of whom have served sentences in the prisons of this country. 70 more being under conviction and out on bail. No one could say that they are not sincere workers for what they consider a better social order, one more geared to the needs of man. They deny that they seek to achieve this by class war, but if this is forced upon them by “Wall Street,” they are not pacifists, but will use force and violence as “self defense.” They deny that they “conspire to use force and violence,” that they are the aggressor, in other words.

Decentralists and distributists as we are, we find ourselves just as often in opposition to the ends as to the means of the Communist Party. But being pacifists, we believe in sitting down to discussion with them. Believing in the works of mercy as we do, to show our love for God and our brother, we would undoubtedly always be more in sympathy with the great mass of the poor, the men in revolt, those in jail, the men of color throughout the world, than we would with imperialists, the colonials, the industrial capitalist, the monopolists. (It is inevitable that I use the jargon of the revolutionist as I write this report.)

“Who is the enemy,” Wm. Z. Foster asked in his opening speech? Certainly not those gathered together there at Chateau Gardens, but the men of Wall Street. And furthermore, a greater enemy to the worker than the government has been the corrupting influence of our prosperity, our soft living, he added.

Foster himself has never hesitated to embrace the Cross though he would not call his sufferings such. Fr. Kaszinsky on the outskirts of Pittsburgh helped him in the great steel strike of 1919, and called him friend. It was a strike which most of the American labor movement disowned as a “Hunky” strike, engineered by “foreign propagandists.” But Foster is an American.

Before I left my room the Sunday morning, of the convention, I picked up the latest book on St. Therese Martin of Lisieux, The Mission of St. Therese, by Abbe Combes, and opening it at random read: “The central issue is to determine how there may be opened a way for the effective action of the floods of infinite solicitude for each and every human soul which it is of the very nature of God to have; and how to make souls the recipients, with as little possible delay, of the fullness of that love which the Infinite Love with the sovereign force of salvific will, desires to shower upon them. Whatever may be the destiny of souls, the urgency of the missionary problem has its roots in the very heart of God. Therese shows strikingly the tragic contrast which obtains, and has long obtained, between the mortal wound in that heart, and not only the unbelief or the apostasy of entire masses, but even the ignorance or the mere indifference of one solitary human heart, closed to such love.”

“To the Marxist specifically,” she says moreover that “the specific remedy for humanity’s ills is the process by which each one of us becomes the point of entry into the sinful world of his fellows, the point of entry for the one really liberating force, the supernatural power of God.”

“Each one of us.” I remembered as I read these lines, the story Madame Krupskaya told in her Memoirs, of the handful of people who used to meet in the public parks in Paris on Sunday afternoons to conduct their workers’ schools, how they lived in slums and ate horse meat and endured exile and poverty and risked arrest and imprisonment. And yet now one third of the people of the world are dominated by these same Marxists, and the convention which was the first to be held since 1950, had major coverage by the biggest newspapers and news service in the country.

There is great debate in the press over the numerical strength of the party. Some wrote that the membership had shrunk to 20,000 in the United States. Others put it as low as five thousand dues-paying members. The C.P. claims 25,000 members. Not since the Hitler-Stalin pact had there been such controversy within the ranks. The Khrushchev speech and the Hungarian and Polish revolt had touched off another world crisis in the party, and the deliberations of this convention were colored by these events. Roughly speaking, there were three factions in the party represented by these delegates who had been elected by their state conventions. Wm. Z. Foster headed one, holding to the orthodox line that the American Party was to follow Moscow in order to keep proletarian unity throughout the world. The John Gates faction believed that there should be a developing Marxism-Leninism to fit the conditions of the American scene, and that criticism of the work of other parties in other countries was to be free. As Editor of the Daily Worker he was in a powerful position to give his views, and for some time he had been manifesting his “liberal” tendencies by giving coverage to such features as Ammon Hennacy’s eleven day fast and picketing of the Customs House where the tax office was located, in his protest against Hiroshima and paying taxes for war and for such bombs as demolished Hiroshima.

In addition to these daily stories, giving a pound by pound description of the progress of Ammon’s fast, they covered also the protest on the War Resisters, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Peacemakers, Quakers, and Catholic Worker in refusing to take shelter during the compulsory air raid drills in the last two summers. For a long time there was no recognition by the Party that any other peace work was being done except by Communist groups and affiliates and such ministers in the Protestant church as Dr. Endicot of Toronto and Dr. Melish of Brooklyn who followed “the party line.”

Eugene Dennis, secretary of the party, seemed to take a middle position. He is secretary of the party (until the newly elected national committee elects another) and he went along with Foster, the old leader (he is 76, but does not look more than sixty) and Gates who is a younger man, moderating their two extremes.

There was a great call for more membership on the national committee, of youth, Negro, Puerto Rican and Mexican workers, and when the voting was completed at the end of the four days, there were three women elected, one Negro girl of 26 who received the highest number of votes, one Mexican girl of 24, born in Denver, and another older woman of thirty from Los Angeles. The three highest votes went to Negroes, Claude Lightfoot of Chicago, who is under sentence for being a “member of the party which taught and conspired to overthrow the government by force and violence” and James Jackson who is also under the same indictment. He is well used to arrests, however, as there is a record of six arrests in Alabama and three in the north where he has worked both in industry and agriculture. One comrade called attention to the fact that under Jackson’s guidance the youth group had circulated 50,000 Southern Peoples’ Programs through the south, and when he was released on bail many southerners had helped raise that bail for him.

Anna Correa, the Mexican girl (there were three other Mexicans from California at the convention) was also convicted under the Smith act and was out on bail of $25,000. While they were trying to raise that bail, she spent five months in a small jail in Colorado, which housed fifty other women. She worked as secretary in business offices and of course lost job after job. Her employer always said he was satisfied with her work but that his friends and associates would condemn him for keeping her on.

Scanning the names of the newly elected 20 members of the 60-man national committee, four had served three or four years in prison, and eight others were convicted and out on bail pending appeal.

All of these people are convicted, not for having done anything, but for having believed in something, and it is a strange and remarkable thing to see such numbers of people assembled in convention having served or being willing to serve long terms in prison for their convictions. When the press and radio commentators expend such effort to assure the public of the insignificance and unimportance of this Communist Party, we wonder why our powerful government finds it necessary to sentence them to prison.

The convention went on for four days behind closed doors, in a smoke-filled dance hall which had for many years been an Eastern Orthodox Church and before that had belonged to the Episcopalian Church. The old parish house contained many offices and meetings of committees were held there. What had been the sanctuary of the Church was not used, and all speaking came from the floor, the chairman’s table in the front, with his microphone and three other microphones set up around the floor. This was not from any reverence for the sanctuary. It had been made a stage where the musicians, the jazz bands, had their stands. One could not help reflecting on the “crass materialism” of the unthinking ones who could turn a place of worship into a place for weekend rout. There are wedding parties there too, and on the Saturday and Sunday of the convention brides and bridesmaids fluttered through the rainy street into the ballroom below the Church. When a Rev. Jones had a revival meeting in the Church proper, the convention itself moved to the ballroom in the basement and with its low ceilings the air became oppressive. As each committee made its report, comrades lined up seven deep behind the microphones to express their opinions. A parliamentarian with a powerful voice interpreted the Rules of Order which will always remain a mystery to me. For almost half the sessions young women presided capably.

On Sunday morning I attended the liturgy at St. Michael’s chapel and since “prayer sung is twice said” according to St. Augustine–I did some heavy praying for the Russians. I love the “insistent litanies.” The very first litany being, “In peace let us pray to the Lord.” And after praying for peace from on high, and for the salvation of our souls, for the peace of the whole world, for the good estate of all the churches of God,” we prayed for “those at sea, those who journey, for the sick, the sufferers and those in prison, and for their salvation,” Lord have mercy.

There was much discussion during those four days as to how to reach the masses, and it made me think of Peter Maurin’s terse saying, “If you wish to reach the man in the street, go to the man in the street,” a slogan which caused us to stand on street corners, in public squares, in front of Churches, union meetings, demonstrations at Madison Square Garden, to bring The Catholic Worker to the people. That was the first plank in Peter’s platform, clarification of thought through distribution of literature and through discussion. Then the handling of immediate problems, reaching the people through the practice of the works of mercy, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, sheltering the homeless.

While those days of talk were going on, the poor, the unemployed, the sick and oppressed were flocking to the doors of the Catholic Worker right around the corner. At six in the morning two hundred or so came in for coffee. At ten o’clock men came for clothes. At noon again men came for soup, again about two hundred or so, and all through the day there were the usual comings and goings. On Sunday when we have an unusually big line, a reporter from Reuters hastened into the office and told us excitedly that two Tass reporters (a Soviet news agency) were talking to men on our bread line, colored and white, and that they were going to send over reports to Moscow of the poverty, hunger and unemployment in this country. Whoever this reporter was, he had never seen breadlines before and was shocked (as anyone would be), but we assured him that St. Francis church, Divine Providence Shelter, St. Clare’s Hospital and any number of other Catholic places fed all those who came to them, and the needy are so many that it is inevitable that breadlines should result. We told him of the lines at the Portland and Stockton Houses of Hospitality, where sometimes as many as a thousand are fed a day. We reminded him of the Negro and Puerto Rican, the destitution of the south, the rootlessness of the migrant worker. We should not be afraid to face the truth, we told him. His frantic desire to have the Russian press think well of our economy matched that of our own U.S. press who wants us to be assured of the ill condition of Russian economy.

Highlights. All through the convention a car filled with six “burly” detectives or FBI men stood outside Chateau Gardens. There was a great deal of picture taking of those who came and went during the week end. There were the two wedding parties. There was the revival meeting of Rev. Jones. I wonder if the FBI got their pictures too. The usual American confusion of interests.

On Sunday there was a picket line of fifty Hungarians from a local society, who called names and threw rotten eggs at the doors. One police inspector was splashed. They called Bayard Rustin a dirty nigger Communist. Bayard is a Quaker.

There were two farmers among the delegates, one from Montana and one from Wisconsin. Five delegates from Wisconsin or thereabouts came to dinner Monday night at The Catholic Worker where we were having corned beef and cabbage. They said it was the best meal they had in New York, and applauded our two cooks, Larry and Roy. Elizabeth Gurley Flynn’s sister, came to dinner also that night and told of her bimonthly visits to Alderson, West Virginia, where her sister has been confined these last years. She goes only every two months so she can have a double visit. Miss Flynn is a retired teacher.

The women were well dressed and the men were mostly without ties, with coats off. One didn’t have to worry about clothes, going to a Communist Party affair. The room was blue with cigaret but there was no evidence of soft drinks or hard drinks either. There was however, literature tables that included works on anthropology, folk art and dance, prison memoirs, and of course an abundance of books and pamphlets on Marxism and Leninism. One book, paper covered, contained the letters of Clara Zetkin to Lenin and I remembered that Elizabeth Mayer who translated my Long Loneliness into German (it is being printed by Herder at Friebourg with a foreword by Archbishop Cushing) told me that many many years ago she used to play Mozart duets with Clara Zetkin in Berlin, so I bought it for her. I also purchased the letters of Marx and Engles to their American friends from 1850 on, and it is strange to remember that Karl Marx was a regular contributor to the New York Tribune.

I was impressed too by the barrenness of the delegates’ terminology. Delegates clung to their clichés as though they were theologians, fearful of inexactitude of expression, fearful of condemnation. They debated endlessly over their position, and such terms as liquidationist, deviationist, sectarianism, opportunistic, were flung at each other’s heads. One felt that their vocabulary was not enriched by reading other than their own texts and commentaries and concordances. There was no applause during or after talks, this was serious business, and when delegates wanted to emphasize the necessity of having more time to state their views, they called attention to the fact that “this issue has been discussed for twenty hours in committee!” “The rephrasing of the resolution has been worked over for sixteen hours!”

How they would have delighted the heart of Peter Maurin with their endless discussion. Peter loved to quote Lenin, “There can be no revolution without a theory of revolution.” And I thought of Mike Kovalak and Ray Scott who sat in The Catholic Worker office last Sunday from twelve noon until nine o’clock at night and sometimes the talk was desultory and critical and sometimes it was for clarification, and it covered the cult, cultivation and culture that Peter wanted. And I was reminded too of Fr. Muellerleile in Mendota, Minnesota, suburb of St. Paul, where there are weekly round table discussions of the Maurin synthesis, and tables of literature in his parish hall.

Then it came to the election of the twenty new members of the new national committee which from now on will be made up of sixty members, the other forty to be elected at the second of the state conventions soon to be held (when the returning delegates have recovered from this one). We who were the invited observers and the other hundred or so comrades having tickets to the convention stayed until all the nominations for officers were in, which was about two o’clock. The observers left then, and the membership remained until six a.m. for the voting. No one thought of food or of fresh air, apparently, “Man does not live by bread alone, nor by oxygen either, it would seem. It was good to get out into the fresh night, and walk around the corner, through the silent streets, past the sycamore trees of the park which gleamed pale in the night and seemed to breathe freshness in those hours free of traffic.

The convention reconvened at eleven the next morning and now was all but over. I would not be able to stay for the last sessions because Norma Melbourne and her baby were driving down to Peter Maurin Farm with me for a visit. But I had seen enough to be assured, and to feel the necessity of assuring our readers, that there is an equal need with us too for self-criticism, for study, for discussion, for coming together to plan the green revolution and work towards the new synthesis.

We need our disciplines, our exercises, our meetings (Mass and the sacraments). We need to study in order to realize more what God is, what we are, what our needs are. We need to know what is going on in the Church today; the lives of the Little Brothers of Jesus, the Little Sisters, who are so closely identified with the poor and who are now spread all over the world. The secular Institutes (the newest is that of St. Isidore out in Minnesota, for farmers). The older associations, Legion of Mary and St. Vincent de Paul societies; the Sisters of Charity and the good Shepherd Nuns, the Little Sisters of the Poor. Reading about their lives and beginnings, one learns how to proceed today. Peter Maurin’s program of hospices and farming communes, can be matched not only in the work that has been done before by religious orders, The Benedictines, for instance (extending it to the family and the parish) with an every-growing increase of emphasis on the role of the laity, but also by study of the work of Gandhi and Vinoba Bhave in India.

As St. Thomas of Aquinas brought Arabian and Greek philosophy to the western world, making a new synthesis, so we need a new synthesis today. I knew some young professors of philosophy, former Marxists and later convert Catholics, who aspired to do to Marx what St. Thomas did to Aristotle–I myself would prefer to see their energies expended on Gandhi and Bhave.

To make vivid the possibility, let me quote from an article in the last issue of Blackfriar’s, edited by Dominicans. Bede Griffiths, the author, is a Benedictine priest who is working in India and he begins:

“India is one of the few countries left in the world which still has the capacity to produce saints.” He goes on to tell the story of Bhave, born in 1895 and after thirty years of a hidden life in one of Gandhi’s ashrams (and also some time in prison) began his public life in 1951, “when he left his ashram for the first time and went to Hyderabad. Hyderabad after the merger with India had fallen into the power of the Communists who had established a reign of terror there. Vinoba thus met and overcame the challenge of Communism at the outset of his mission. This is of the greatest significance, for Vinoba’s way represents the most authentic answer to Communism which has yet been found.”

“The two principles” of his social revolution are “non violence and non-ownership.” “Ultimately it would seem that he looks towards a state in which all land would be held in common and each would have what he required for his use; just as ultimately he would seem to look forward to a stateless society in which all would freely cooperate for the good of all. But these Utopian ideas do not lead to any lack of practical wisdom in his immediate plans. The most striking thing in all Vinoba’s plans is his firm grasp of the principle that human life must be organized on the basis of the village community. In India where the vast majority still live in villages, this is a natural conception, but it is a matter of fundamental importance for the whole world … The tendency in India as elsewhere is to drag the people away from the land and to concentrate them in large industrial towns. This is surely the root problem of modern society and nowhere have we seen it faced and answered with such assurance as by Bhave.”

“We have grown so accustomed to defending the rights of property and self defense, that it sometimes seems that the Church stands for the defense of capitalism and war. Is it not time that we recognized that the Gospel calls on us precisely to give up these natural rights in the name of a higher law?”

I quote these short excerpts to give you a sample of the kind of thinking and working that is going on in the Church today all over the world. We can look to France, to a Pere Loew, Pere Voillaume, and Abbe Pierre–and a great new leadership that is resulting in tremendous works of research on the part of Dominicans, Carmelites, and many others. The Benedictines, and the Dominicans in England are giving us “a theory of revolution.” And there is still a Don Luigi Sturzo in Rome, who has written mightily and lived mightily in a long struggle for the people, a great figure who lived in exile in London as Karl Marx did and whose researches and writings should be as carefully explored by Catholics as Marx’s and Lenin’s are by Communists.

Perhaps by this article I may stimulate our readers to this hard study. I heard plenty of criticism from homefolks as well as the press itself for accepting the invitation of the Communists. There was more “What about Hungary?” and “What about Trotsky?” than there was “What about the persecuted Church?” But my interest was not so much political as religious, absorbed as I am at the needs of incorporating social thinking into the works of mercy. I am interested in the Communists as human beings, creatures of body and soul, made to the image and likeness of God. In the struggle ahead is it the capitalist or the Communist who will be easier to convert?

After the close of the convention I was asked to write my impressions to the Sunday Worker and sent the following letter:

It is easier to write a long account rather than a letter of my impression of the Communist Party Convention. I think your invitation to us was an important move in the light of what has been happening in Poland and Hungary. I do not go along with the lawyer from the American Civil Liberties Union who claims that the Communist Party is dishonestly infiltrating unions and such organizations for civil rights and justice as the N.A.A.C.P. I give the comrades credit for sincerely working for justice and love of the poor and oppressed. It is on the basis of our brotherhood that I too wish that we could work together in this great country which we all love and which has sheltered people from all over the world. One cannot read the Daily Worker, and such articles as those of John Gates, without believing in the sincerity of their confessions of past errors and policies. But I must frankly say that even though this move is sincere in establishing an independent American Party, it is not too logical. The independents will become innocuous liberals, and the old doctrinaire Communists like Foster will remain true to Marxism-Leninism. This is evaluating it from the religious point of view. If you truly believe with Lenin, that atheism is an integral part of Marxism, then one cannot bypass religion as an unimportant factor in the struggle for a better social order here in America.

Cardinals and bishops, through whom comes the succession from St. Peter, which makes our Church one and apostolic, have either been imprisoned or exiled, or urged to separate from Rome in countries all over the world. If you can break up human institutions you believe you have overcome the Church. The same line of argument goes for Communism. Broken up into national parties, it will lose its force as an international proletarian revolution. I am sure you recognize this as we Catholics do, and know that this move towards an independent party is only a temporary move–in the light of world history, a necessary move.

We all want peace, and will make many and great sacrifices to gain the time to work for it. Cardinal Wyszynski is making these sacrifices in Poland now, and is setting an example to others in the Church. And be assured that all of us at The Catholic Worker, in our small way, will do all in our power to work for and pray for an increase of brotherly love among us all, since it is only by love of brother that we can show our love of God.

Yours for a green (not a red) revolution.

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