Shelter of Mercy
In her autobiography, The Long Loneliness (HarperOne, 2009), Dorothy Day shares her experience with prayer. She was a single mother living on her own and lacking money, with no clue as to what to do with her life. She went to the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC, knelt before Our Lady, and begged Mary to help her immediately. When she returned to her New York apartment that night, a man named Peter Maurin was sitting on the steps of her apartment building. He had heard about her, had an idea, and needed her help. He explained the concept of a social, religious, and political movement called the Catholic Worker. From that moment, Dorothy Day had a vision for her life.
Mary, Our Mother, is often referred to as our refuge and our hope. She is a place of safety for anyone lost in sin and seeking the shelter of mercy, for anyone seeking an anchor in the stormy seas of life. Like her son who never tires of searching for us, Mary doesn’t want to lose us any more than a woman wants to lose 10 percent of her savings or a shepherd one of his sheep.
Lost is a place. It’s where we can always find Mary, waiting to show us the way.