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   Black Catholic News [ January / February 2015 ]

New Bible Is Designed Specifically for Young Black Catholics

The African American Catholic Youth BibleIn January Saint Mary’s Press will publish The African American Catholic Youth Bible®, the first Bible designed specifically for use by young black Catholics in the US. It has taken five years for the initial concept to become a reality.

In 2009 John Vitek, president of Saint Mary’s Press, talked with Bishop John Ricard, president of the National Black Catholic Congress. Vitek wanted to do something to help evangelize a segment of the US Catholic Church that was being ignored. What could Saint Mary’s Press do to help move young black Catholics forward into a deeper faith experience––specifically as young black Catholics?

Saint Mary’s Press had already published The Catholic Youth Bible. It was not an adult Bible, with only text and footnotes. Instead, it included many special features that made the Bible more useful and appealing to teens. In addition to the biblical text, it had age–appropriate artwork, youth–focused articles and definitions, four–color inserts and many deliberate layout features (like narrower columns) that made it much easier for teens to read and navigate through. From start to finish, it was designed specifically for teens to use. Full Story

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 Evening of Reflection on the feast of Saint Katharine Drexel
March 3, 2015
 Annual Women’s Lenten Retreat
March 14 2015
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March 14, 2015
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March 14, 2015
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March 21, 2015
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April 24-26th 2015
In The News
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Life Style >>

$25,000 George W. Hunt, S.J. Prize to be Launched$25,000 George W. Hunt, S.J. Prize to be Launched - The Board of Trustees of America and of the St. Thomas More Chapel and Center at Yale University are proud to announce the creation of the George W. Hunt, S.J. Prize for Excellence in Journalism, Arts & Letters. The Hunt Prize, which is to be awarded annually at the sum of $25,000, is open to Catholic writers under the age of 45 who have published and can provide a sample of work that has been published in the English language.

Youth & Young Adults >>

NETWORK Associate ProgramNETWORK Associate Program - NETWORK, a National Catholic Social Justice Lobby, is seeking to further involve African Americans and other people of color with their work as a Catholic social justice lobby organization. They offer an annual NETWORK Associate Program to provide young people with the chance to work on educating, organizing, and lobbying on social justice issues at a national level.

NBCC Spotlight >>

NBCC awards $95,000 to 12 Organizations!NBCC awards $95,000 to 12 Organizations! - The National Black Catholic Congress Board of Trustees unanimously agreed to award grants from the Daniel Rudd Fund for African American Catholic Ministries at its Fall Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland on November 7, 2014.

NBCC News >>

Pope Francis appoints Bishop-elect Fernand J. Cheri, III, OFM, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of New Orleans - Please join the National Black Catholic Congress (NBCC) in congratulating Bishop-elect Fernand J. Cheri, III, O.F.M., appointed by Pope Francis to be an Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of New Orleans. Bishop-elect Cheri was a member of the NBCC Board of Trustees, very active in NBCC events, and we join our church family in celebrating him with this prestigious honor. May God be praised.

The Racial Divide in the United States: A Reflection for the World Day of Peace 2015 
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ: May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace, fill your hearts throughout the New Year! As the Catholic Church celebrates the World Day of Peace today, I am pleased to share this Reflection with you. Please be generous with your time so that you can read it carefully. I invite you to reflect on its contents, pray about its concerns, and discuss its challenges with your sisters and brothers in Christ.

Bishop: Catholics should ‘rekindle’ commitment to end racism - Bishop Ricard, who grew up in the segregated South in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and was a seminarian in Washington when the Civil Rights Act passed, does not have a simple reason for why the Church has not been as outspoken in recent years but he thinks complacency is partly to blame. “People throw up their hands in air when there aren’t clear solutions or they are distracted by other things going on,” he told Catholic News Service. What he would like to see happen in the wake of the Ferguson decision and reaction is for parishes or dioceses to convene to discuss racism.

US Catholic theologians call for Police reforms and racial justice in America - The online National Catholic Reporter and a number of Catholic magazines have recently released the statement written by Tobias Winright of St. Louis University, Alex Mikulich of Loyola University New Orleans, Vincent Miller of University of Dayton and Bryan N. Massingale of Marquette University with others in which they have expressed concern with the killing of Black men, women and children. Several other persons have since penned their signatures to the statement. Read the statement which also quotes Pope Francis’­­­­­ exhortation, “Evangelii Gaudium.”

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Spirituality >>

What Is So “New” About the New Evangelization?What Is So “New” About the New Evangelization? - People are talking about the New Evangelization. It is an exciting time in the Church! It has always been her mission to “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations.” (Mt. 28:19) But there is a newness to it in these times, an urgency. Can you feel it?

The miracle of the Eucharist in Santarem, PortugalThe miracle of the Eucharist in Santarem, Portugal - Around the year 1225 there was a woman living in Santarem, who was very unhappy with her marriage. She was convinced that her husband did not love her, and was unfaithful. She initially tried numerous things to win back the affection of her husband, but to no avail.

Health & Wellness >>

Lessons for LovingLessons for Loving - What to Ask Yourself Before Committing to a Relationship. Three questions from surveys of long–married elders can help in selecting a mate. Published on December 14, 2014 by Karl Pillemer, Ph.D. in Lessons for Loving. In preparation for a large study of the advice of older (and often long–married) people about love, marriage, and relationships, I conducted a series of focus groups with younger people.

Book of the Month >>

The African American Catholic Youth BibleThe African American Catholic Youth Bible - The Bible was developed by retired Bishop John H. Ricard of Pensacola-Tallahassee, Florida, who is president of the National Black Catholic Congress, and St. Mary’s Press. It has been in the works for over four years. “We wanted to have something that would appeal to our youth and we wanted to make it as relevant as possible to their lives,” said Bishop Ricard in a phone interview with Catholic News Service. “After many years of exploring, we thought that this would be an effective way of doing it.”

Author of the Month >>

Pope FrancisPope Francis - The first Pope of the Americas Jorge Mario Bergoglio hails from Argentina. The 78-year-old Jesuit Archbishop of Buenos Aires is a prominent figure throughout the continent, yet remains a simple pastor who is deeply loved by his diocese, throughout which he has travelled extensively on the underground and by bus during the 15 years of his episcopal ministry.

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