Martha Delano, Alum, Faculty
Teachers College 1959
School of Nursing 1949
This will be brief. Some time at Columbia (two years at Barnard), around 1944-46, I became acquainted with the writings of Thomas Merton. I read "The Seven Storey Mountain" and particularly enjoyed his recollections of university life. I do not recall being at all involved in any religious organizations although I knew of Father Ford at Corpus Christi Church, which was in the community.
The book was an account of Merton's journey through life and his ultimate conversion to Catholicism. The spiritual aspects of the book were rather lost on me but the tie to Columbia was a source of great pleasure to me. I recently revisited "Seven Storey Mountain" and the old pull to the 40's at Columbia was still strong but the spiritual journey he described was glorious. Merton's writings, such as "New Seeds of Contemplation," have become my daily companions. Therefore Columbia played an important role in my life, although the seed took a long time to germinate.
Editor's note: Thomas Merton is profiled at http://c250.columbia.edu/c250_celebrates/remarkable_columbians/thomas_merton.html