The Rev. Daniel Berrigan, a legendary peace activist who led protests against the Vietnam War and nuclear weapons that landed him in jail, has been memorialized in a portrait by a Philadelphia-born artist unveiled recently at Villanova University, writes Melanie Burney for the Philadelphia Inquirer.
A Jesuit priest and poet, Berrigan was known for defiant acts of civil disobedience that inspired others to follow suit in protesting the war. Along with his brother Philip and six others — they were known as the Plowshares Eight — Berrigan was arrested in 1980 after a raid at the General Electric missile plant in King of Prussia, where they hammered missile warheads.
“The day after I’m embalmed,” Berrigan said on his 80th birthday in 2001, “that’s when I’ll give it up.”
Berrigan died in 2016 in New York. He was 94.
A 4-by-5-foot oil portrait of Berrigan by artist Ruane Manning was unveiled at a celebration of his life held at Villanova in the Driscoll Hall Auditorium.
The event was sponsored by Orbis Books, a publisher of religious works that commissioned the painting, and Villanova University’s Center for Peace and Justice Education, which focuses on social justice and peace issues.
Read more about Rev. Berrigan here.