Daniel Berrigan S.J., a priest and poet died, died on April 30th 2016. He was ninety four.
The Economist magazine put it this way:
“To do good. On every occasion to do the right thing as he saw it . . . no matter how disruptive and no matter what the cost. This was Daniel Berrigan’s motivation.” 1
Not everyone would agree with his actions, yet it must be conceded that this man worked tirelessly for peace. In May 1968, he and eight others set fire to 378 stolen files of young men about to be drafted in Vietnam. For this act, he was sentenced to three years in prison. He did not rest. In 1980, he led a group into GE’s missile plant in Pennsylvania. In his 80’s he took part in Occupy Wall Street and marched against the war in Iraq.
The two most influential people in his life were Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton. They urged him to work among outcasts and to labor for peace. As it turned out, he fulfilled his vocation.
1 “Blessed are the peacemakers.” The Economist. May 21st, 2016.