Dorothy Day's granddaughter reflects on her legacy

(CNS photo/Sam Lucero, The Compass) 
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This week’s guest is Kate Hennessy, who recently wrote an essay for America about her grandmother and famed founder of The Catholic Worker, Dorothy Day. The youngest of Day’s nine grandchildren, Hennessy is the author of Dorothy Day: The World Will Be Saved By Beauty.
 
Discussing her inspiration for the book, Hennessy said: “I realized...that I had to write [my grandmother’s] story. If I didn’t, it would not be written, and it was an incredibly important story.
 
“I think one of the hardest things in this life—the Catholic Worker life—is...living with people’s needs and understanding them, and trying to find a balance between protecting yourself and helping,” Hennessy said. “[Dorothy Day] understood people’s needs, and there are so many people with needs. That really took a lot of energy from my grandmother.” 

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While Hennessy welcomes much of the recent attention her grandmother has been given, she also noted that people can tell Dorothy Day’s story very selectively. “I hope that my book has helped to...give this whole expanse of this fabulous life, with huge mistakes and huge failures, but also with incredible richness.” 
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