Fr. Dan Berrigan: ‘Peace I Leave With You’

26142144483_ed8ae3568d_oToday, on the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker, we celebrate the life of Daniel J. Berrigan, a Jesuit priest of “uncommon conscience,” as William Stringfellow called him. (See my earlier post.)

Heidi and I attended St. Stephens & the Incarnation Episcopal Church today to hear our friend and pastor Linda Kaufman preach. When we made plans to attend, we didn’t know it would be the day after losing Dan. It was the perfect celebration.

It’s in this church that the Holy Week Faith and Resistance retreats, led by Phil Berrigan, Liz McAlister, Art Laffin and others of the East Coast Catholic Worker and Jonah House communities, have been held for decades. Dan Berrigan spent a lot of nights sleeping on the floor in this church basement.

Linda’s sermon drew on the readings for the sixth Sunday of Easter–Revelation 21 and John 14. The political poetry in Revelation was an apt memorial for Dan: Here the wounded lamb is the center of the healing of the nations. And in John 14 Jesus says to his disillusioned and confused disciples: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

The mantle of the Berrigan brothers and the communities and families with them is laid down for us … to take up in community. We cannot be the peace of Christ alone.

A wake, public witness, funeral Mass and celebration of resurrection will be held in New York City on Thursday and Friday, May 5-6.

Wake and funeral arrangements for Father Dan Berrigan
Thursday, May 5:
2-5pm and 7-9pm, Wake
Church of St Francis Xavier
46 W 16th St, New York, NY
Friday, May 6:
7:30am, Peace Witness and March to Xavier (gathering location TBA)
Mass at 10am
Church of St Francis Xavier, 46 W 16th St, New York

Here are bits and pieces of more news about Dan Berrigan’s death (and in us and Christ, his resurrection):

Poet and Prophet: The peacemaking legacy of Daniel Berrigan, SJ (America)

The Life and Death of Dan Berrigan by John Dear

Father Daniel Berrigan, Anti-War Activist & Poet, Dies at 94 (Democracy Now!)

Daniel J. Berrigan, Defiant Priest Who Preached Pacifism, Dies at 94 (New York Times)

Daniel Berrigan, poet, peacemaker, dies at 94 (National Catholic Reporter)

Daniel Berrigan, Activist Jesuit Priest Who Opposed Vietnam War, Dies (NPR)

Born on Iron Range, peace activist and priest Daniel Berrigan dies Minneapolis Star Tribune

Jesuit priest, peace activist Daniel Berrigan dies at 94 (CBS News)

Tim Nafzinger: Financial Institutions and Babylon

At OLSX, St. Paul's. Photo credit: Duncan C.,

As part of the Word and World mentoring circle that I belong to we have been reading Protestant theologian William Stringfellow and talking about the Occupy Movement.

Here’s a concise insight from Tim Nafzinger:

>>It’s very interesting, in light of our recent discussion on William Stringfellow’s An Ethic for Christians and Other Aliens in a Strange Land to read George Monbiot’s column in The Guardian naming the Corporation of the City of London (the official name of the square mile in London that houses many of the world’s most powerful banks and financial institutions) as “Babylon” in yesterday’s Guardian. Note this is a completely different legal entity from the London where 3 million people live. Monbiot writes:

It’s the dark heart of Britain, the place where democracy goes to die, immensely powerful, equally unaccountable. But I doubt that one in 10 British people has any idea of what the Corporation of the City of London is and how it works. This could be about to change. Alongside the Church of England, the Corporation is seeking to evict the protesters camped outside St Paul’s cathedral. The protesters, in turn, have demanded that it submit to national oversight and control. …

[The City] has also made the effective regulation of global finance almost impossible. Shaxson shows how the absence of proper regulation in London allowed American banks to evade the rules set by their own government. AIG’s wild trading might have taken place in the US, but the unit responsible was regulated in the City. Lehman Brothers couldn’t get legal approval for its off-balance sheet transactions in Wall Street, so it used a London law firm instead. No wonder priests are resigning over the plans to evict the campers. The Church of England is not just working with Mammon; it’s colluding with Babylon.

Fittingly enough, from a Stringfellow perspective, this private banking world is often just referred to as “The City.”

Monbiot’s naming and shaming (along with the resignation of three Church of England clergy members) seems to have had its effect. This morning the Church of England stopped its attempts to evict Occupy London. Now it’s just Babylon against them…<<

Thanks Tim.