The Acts of Today’s Apostles


Acts 13:13-25; John 13:16-20  Blessed Bernard the Penitent

The book of Acts is a description of the Apostles embracing the Risen Christ and living out their faith, preaching, feeding and caring for the needy;  the church grew because in a society that cared little for people  Christians fed the hungry, clothed the naked, took care of those who were sick, visited those in prison.  They experienced  the Risen Christ and lived out that experience. They shared of their material goods, they shared of themselves, event to the point of death.

When people point out how special Dorothy Day was, or how “special” I am for the work she did, and I do , or others who do the same work, it sometimes makes me sick to my stomach. For one thing I am a bumbling fool.  Dorothy, many others, and  myself are compelled by Christ  to do this work. We have no choice in order to live out our lives fully.It is our choice, and in this  choice we find a wholeness to our lives 

I have been doing interviews for my dissertation with various people.  Almost to a one they talk of working with the government to get people off the street, to work with the poor. They talk in a distant manner, not themselves getting their hands dirty.  When I hear the homeless and the poor put at a distance it makes me sick. For when we lose the sight of the individual, we lose our humanity.

Today as Robby and I walked the Haight, giving out food and socks, we were simply taking care of our friends.  They are not people to be told they have to do anything. To me they are God’s children, each and every one of them. One of the young men commented recently he always liked me because “this is not your job, you are my friend.” 

To be a friend for me personally means we are willing to share of what we have, to be there with people in their pain, in their suffering and in their joys.To provide resources when they want those resources, and  to work with them on their level.

To me this is what being embraced by Christ is about–to move from that embrace in loving people equally, sharing of what we have, to the our greatest limits– to provide for their needs, getting our hands dirty. In Christ’s embrace we are peers with all.  We get hurt, but that in that pain we realize our fullest humanity, embraced in the love of the Risen Christ. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Temenos Catholic Worker

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164


Fr. River Damien Sims

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