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Featured Article: Let the Children Come to Me: How We Saved Our Catholic School - It was September 2007. I was three years into my pastorate at the historic St. Augustine Catholic Church in the Archdiocese of Washington. Our school had just received its notice of termination: with 175 students, it would close in June 2008 along with seven other parish schools serving predominantly African American students. Flash forward nine years. We did not close but are still here today alive and well! Read Full Story

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Father Augustus Tolton: The First Recognized Black Catholic Priest in America
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 Building Intercultural Competence for Ministers (BICM)
July 4-8, 2016
 Archbishop James Patterson Lyke Conference
July 5-9, 2016
 Hope, Help, and Healing: A Catholic Response to Domestic Violence and Abuse
May 7, 2016
 Year of Mercy Reflection Day!
July 18, 2016
 Third African National Eucharistic Congress
August 5-7, 2016
 Third African National Eucharistic Congress Sponsorship Opportunities
August 5-7, 2016
 Hail Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, Our Life, Our Sweetness, And Our Hope!
August 13, 2016
 Holy Spirit Men’s Retreat
August 19-21, 2016
 Heavenly Host of Stars Gala
August 21, 2016
 ALL UPCOMING EVENTS
In The News
 Congress XII Update: The National Black Catholic Congress
 Domestic Violence Workshop held at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Alexandria, Virginia
 New Data Shows Female-Headed Households See Higher Levels of Poverty, Hunger
 St. Katharine Drexel Shrine put up for sale
 After vision of Christ, Nigerian bishop says rosary will bring down Boko Haram
 Christians in Nigeria are essentially ‘target practice’ – here’s one bishop’s response
 The Future of the African American Past
 Twelve inducted into Baltimore Catholic League Hall of Fame
 130th Anniversary of Ordination of Father Augustus Tolton
 You have my gratitude, Pope Francis tells prison chaplains
 Last Call for Large Photo of 10 African American Bishops
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Congress XII Update
Bishop John Ricard, President of the National Black Catholic Congress

Congress XII Update: The National Black Catholic Congress

Dear NBCC Friends and Associates:

In keeping with the mission of the National Black Catholic Congress, established by NBCC founder Daniel Rudd, Congress XII will be held at the Hyatt Regency Orlando, Florida, from July 6th through the 9th, 2017. The theme for this Congress, “The Spirit of the Lord is Upon Me: act justly, love goodness, and walk humbly with your God,”encompasses the objectives of the twelfth Congress -- to present the opportunity for leaders to address issues such as racial inequality and the response of the Church in light of the present unrest -- in addition to topics related to the sanctity of life at every stage, and marriage and family, among others.

Full Story


Last Call for Large Photo of 10 African American Bishops

Second Time Around
The African American Bishops, standing from left to right: Most Rev. Wilton D. Gregory (Archbishop of Atlanta); Most Rev. John H. Ricard (Bishop Emeritus of Pensacola-Tallahassee); Msot Rev. Martin D. Holley (Auxiliary Bishop of Washington, DC_; Most Rev. Joseph N. Perry (Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago); Most Rev. Edward K. Braxton (Bishop of Belleville); Most Rev. George V. Murry (Bishop of Youngstown). Seated, from left to right are: Most Rev. Guy Sansaricq (retired Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn); Most Rev. James T. Steib (Bishop of Memphis); Most Rev. Shelton J. Fabre (Bishop of Houma-Thibodaux); Most Rev. Curtis J. Guillory (Bishop of Beaumont, Texas).

A remaining few copies of the 14” x 11” color photograph of our shepherds, prior to Bishop Cheri’s ordination, are available upon request - FREE on a first come basis, while supplies last!

Send your request to Donna Grimes at dgrimes@usccb.org


You have my gratitude, Pope Francis tells prison chaplains

Pope Francis visits the Rebibbia prison
Pope Francis visits the Rebibbia prison in Rome, April 2, 2015. Credit: L'Osservatore Romano.

Pope Francis has sent a special message to support the work of prison chaplains during the Year of Mercy.....The Pope also thanked prison chaplains for helping the incarcerated to celebrate the Year of Mercy. The observance includes the establishing of Holy Doors in various churches and prisons to help encourage growth in grace…. Full Story


130th Anniversary of Ordination of Father Augustus Tolton

Bishop Perry Eucharistic liturgy April 25th, 2016
The deacon and subdeacon incense Bishop Perry during the Eucharistic liturgy on April 25th.

On Monday April 25, 2016, the Norbertine parish St. John the Baptist in Costa Mesa was the site of a Solemn Pontifical High Mass offered by Bishop Joseph Perry, from the Archdiocese of Chicago. The Mass was celebrated in honor of Fr. Augustus Tolton, the first black priest of the United States, on the occasion of the 130th anniversary of his priestly ordination. Bishop Perry preached and the music included works by Anton Bruckner, Franz Schubert and José Nunes-Garcia. Please pray for the success of this holy man’s cause for canonization. Full Story


Twelve inducted into Baltimore Catholic League Hall of Fame

Baltimore Catholic League Hall of Fame 2016 Inductees
The 2016 inductees to the Baltimore Catholic League Hall-of-Fame are (l-r): Pat Maggio, contributer Cardinal Gibbons, Paul Feeley, Loyola Blakefield 1971, Keon Chavez, St. Frances 1995, Rodney Gibson, St. Maria Goretti 2001, Bessie Black, mother of Norman Black, Cardinal Gibbons 1975, Leroy Keller, Archbishop Curley 1980, James "Pop" Tubman, Calvert Hall 1982, Jeff Cross, Mount Saint Joseph 1976, Danny Robinson, Towson Catholic 1991, and coach William Wells, St. Frances. (Kenneth K. Lam / Baltimore Sun)

Wells called it “one of the greatest nights” for him. He said not only did he become the first African-American coach to be inducted, but three players he coached at either the youth or high school level — Chavez, Robinson and Tubman — were honored alongside him. Full Story


Chicago archbishop helps parish build neighborhood peace

Deacon William Pouncy
Deacon William Pouncy encourages drivers in passing cars to "Honk for Jesus" outside St. Martin de Porres Church in Chicago May 1. Parishioners took to the streets to witness for peace in their neighborhood, which has experienced rising violence, after a Mass celebrated by Chicago Archbishop Blase J. Cupich. (CNS photo/Karen Callaway, Catholic New World)

The city of Chicago’s Austin neighborhood leads a noteworthy list, but one its residents would rather not be on.

“As of April 25, the Austin community - our community, our immediate community - led Chicago in 23 homicides and 101 people being shot. This is insane. This is wrong,” Father Tom Walsh, pastor of St. Martin de Porres Parish told those gathered for Mass May 1 celebrated by Archbishop Blase J. Cupich. Full Story


The Future of the African American Past

The Future of the African American Past
A slave cabin from the early 1800s at Point of Pines Plantation on Edisto Island in South Carolina. National Museum of African American History and Culture

In October 1983, a generation of senior historians gathered at Purdue University under the auspices of the AHA to share what they had learned about the African American past and to establish what issues still needed to be explored. The conference and the resulting publication (The State of Afro-American History: Past, Present, and Future, 1986) became milestones-they provided not only a classic assessment of the field at the time, but also helpful guides for moving forward. Now, 33 years later, we stand at a different moment in the historical field. A new generation of historians is bringing fresh insights to long-standing questions and answering others that were only dimly imagined in the 1980s. Full Story


Christians in Nigeria are essentially ‘target practice’ – here’s one bishop’s response

Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah. Credit: Aid to the Church in Need/James Nicholls.
Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah. Credit: Aid to the Church in Need/James Nicholls.

For Bishop Matthew Kukah, persecution is not just the history of the Church. It’s a reality that he lives every day.

In the diocese of Sokoto, located in northern Nigeria, ministry includes not only the normal sacramental and pastoral concerns of any other diocese. It also includes regularly responding to violence and attacks against the small Christian minority living in the majority-Muslim area. Full Story


After vision of Christ, Nigerian bishop says rosary will bring down Boko Haram

After vision of Christ, Nigerian bishop says rosary will bring down Boko Haram

A Nigerian bishop says that he has seen Christ in a vision and now knows that the rosary is the key to ridding the country of the Islamist terrorist organization Boko Haram…. Bishop Dashe said he has a strong devotion to Christ’s mother, and that “I never joke with ‘Mamma Mary.’ I know she is here with us.” Full Story


St. Katharine Drexel Shrine put up for sale

St. Katharine Drexel Shrine put up for sale
The National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel and the motherhouse of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament in Bensalem, Pa., will be sold.

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) -- The Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, the congregation founded by St. Katharine Drexel, announced that it will sell its historic motherhouse in Bensalem, Pennsylvania. The 44-acre property also contains the National Shrine of St. Katharine Drexel and her tomb. Full Story


New Data Shows Female-Headed Households See Higher Levels of Poverty, Hunger

Female-Headed Households See Higher Levels of Poverty, Hunger

Washington, D.C., May 6, 2016 - Women, particularly single mothers, are disproportionately affected by poverty and hunger, according to a new analysis, Hunger and Poverty among Female-Headed Households, released today by the Bread for the World Institute.

“Female-headed households make up just over half of American low-income households with children,” said Asma Lateef, director of Bread for the World Institute. Full Story


Domestic Violence Workshop held at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Alexandria, Virginia

Keynote Speaker, Dr. Rita L. Robinson, Ph.D., defines domestic abuse for workshop attendees.
Keynote Speaker, Dr. Rita L. Robinson, Ph.D., defines domestic abuse for workshop attendees.

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), a woman in the U.S. is assaulted or beaten every 9 seconds, and on average, nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner, and one in three women and one in four men are victims of physical violence by an intimate partner within their lifetime (http://www.ncadv.org/learn/statistics).

St. Joseph Catholic Church in Alexandria, Virginia, presented a Domestic Violence Workshop on May 07, 2016. The presentation included keynote speakers Renesia Martin and Dr. Rita L. Robinson, Ph.D., LCPC. (Photos taken by Phyllis L. Johnson) Full Story


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