Dedicated to improving the lives of Black Catholics across the United States 

Contact the Tribunal Office in your diocese for more information about the Annulment process.

Calendar of Events​​

Copy this link to share the NBCC Summer Newsletter with others:

Gifts of Service

Stories from three women about their call to service:

* Sr. Desiré Anne-Marie Findlay, CSSF

* Sr, Gwynette Proctor, SNDdeN

* Ms. Gail Grady​​

Why do we call Mary, Our Lady of Sorrows”?

The title, “Our Lady of Sorrows,” given to our Blessed Mother focuses on her intense suffering and grief during the passion and death of our Lord.  Traditionally, this suffering was not limited to the passion and death event; rather, it comprised “the seven dolors” or “seven sorrows” of Mary, which were foretold by the Priest Simeon who proclaimed to Mary, “This child [Jesus] is destined to be the downfall and the rise of many in Israel, a sign that will be opposed– and you yourself shall be pierced with a sword– so that the thoughts of many hearts may be laid bare” (Luke 2:34-35).  These seven sorrows of our Blessed Mother included the prophecy of Simeon, the flight of the Holy Family into Egypt; the loss and finding of the child Jesus in the Temple; Mary’s meeting of Jesus on His way to Calvary; Mary’s standing at the foot of the cross when our Lord was crucified; her holding of Jesus when He was taken down from the cross; and then our Lord’s burial.  In all, the prophesy of Simeon that a sword would pierce our Blessed Mother’s heart was fulfilled in these events.  For this reason, Mary is sometimes depicted with her heart exposed and with seven swords piercing it.  More importantly, each new suffering was received with the courage, love, and trust that echoed her fiat, “let it be done unto me according to Thy word,” first uttered at the Annunciation. Read more...

​​The loss of formality in society causes us to lose our understanding of the importance of formality in human experience.

What is the Truth About Annulment?

This sermon is about the beauty of marriage by way of the pain of annulments, and it is sure to be controversial. It might sound excessively traditional, but it is based on a key line of a quote from Pope John Paul II. He said that for a declaration of nullity to be granted, run-of-the-mill difficulties in marriage were not sufficient, but rather, “real incapacity is to be
considered [for an annulment
analysis] only when an anomaly
of a serious nature is present”
—Pope John Paul II’s
exhortation on Canon 1095,
written on 25 February 1987.
​ ​

Improving the Health of Older Adults at Home and in the Community

AAA Innovation in a Changing Health Care Landscape

For more than 40 years, Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) have developed local systems of coordinated services and supports that provide person-centered, home and community-based services for older adults. Services offered through AAAs include meals provided in the home and in community settings, in-home care assistance, transportation, information and referral, evidence-based health and wellness programs, medication management, case management and more. The U.S. health care system is in the midst of a dramatic change as focus shifts from delivering volume to improving outcomes and value for patients. This evolution, combined with the rapid aging of the population, reinforces the need for health care systems to tap the expertise of Area Agencies on Aging and their Aging Network partners to meet the health and wellness needs of our nation’s aging population. Read more...

'Angel Friends' Among Us: 

How the Gabriel
Network helps mothers and children realize
​better lives

You Are Not Alone

Read about a NEW Archdiocese of Baltimore Ministry to families experiencing loss through miscarriage

Update on Black Catholic Saints-to-be


Signs and Symbols in the Mass


Servant of God, Fr. Augustus Tolton

Augustus was born to two slaves, Peter Paul Tolton and his wife Martha Jane, on April 1, 1854. With the outbreak of the War between the States, Peter Paul hoped to gain freedom for his family and escaped to the North where he served in the Union Army, and was one of the 180,000 blacks who were killed in the war. His widow decided that she would see her husband’s quest for freedom realized in his children. After managing a crossing of the Mississippi River she made her way to Illinois and settled in the small town of Quincy. Read more...

​Saturday, September 22, 2018
10 am Mass of Resurrection
Internment after the Mass
Repast to follow in the Church Hall​

In Memoriam

Deacon Keith McKnight became an Ordained Clergy of the Permanent Diaconate of the Catholic Church on June 5, 1999 in the Archdiocese of Newark, New Jersey. He was the beloved spouse of the late Rita McKnight.  Deacon Keith served in the parish of Christ the King Catholic Church in Jersey City, New Jersey, the first established parish for the Apostolate of Black Catholics in the State of New Jersey (1930). Deacon McKnight loved his faith community and

served tirelessly to further the evangelization mission of the Church within the African American community and the general

Catholic community at large.
        Deacon Keith was a joyful evangelizer. His brilliant smile and jovial spirit were the signature appeal to his carrying the message

of the Gospel.  Deacon truly loved to preach. His favorite prophet was Jeremiah. The quote of Jeremiah 20:9 (“…there is in my heart

as like a fire shut up in my bones. I cannot hold it in…”) is the mantra of Deacon McKnight. It fully expresses his love of preaching

the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
        Rev. Mr. Keith McKnight is survived by his son Kevin McKnight and daughter in law Cheryl McKnight, his grandson

Christopher McKnight and twin granddaughters Katelyn and Kayla McKnight.

An artist's drawing shows an overview of the new prayer garden at St. Francis Xavier in Houston. (Courtesy of St. Francis Xavier)


Ask Fr. Josh is the podcast where I hear you out and do my best to help you navigate the tricky times in life when our Catholic Faith doesn’t give you an easy “fill-in-the blank” answer. On this show, we’ll listen to one another, problem solve together, and ultimately entrust everything to our Lord. If this is your first time tuning in, here’s how the show goes: Each episode, I'll address three to four of your questions. I’ll cover everything from Catholic teaching to moral dilemmas to relationship advice. I'm not perfect, and I can’t guarantee that my advice is going to make things easy, but I'll do my best to share what I've learned during my time as a priest, pastor, and friend. Email me your questions at and find out more at

Summer 2018​​

Get in touch with your faith!

Black Catholic Women of Diocese of Lafayette to
​host first Black Catholic Women's conference

By: Lora Lavigne |  Sep 18, 2018 08:15 AM CDT

N E W S L E T T E R 

Concise graphics provide an easy-to-follow 


Click any image

to download or

click here.

Servant of God Julia Greeley

​Denver's Angel of Charity was born into slavery, at Hannibal, Missouri, between 1833 and 1848. As a young child, Julia's right eye was destroyed by a cruel slavemaster's whip.

Freed by the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, Julia subsequently earned her keep by serving white families in Missouri, Colorado, Wyoming and New Mexico—though mostly in the Denver area. Whatever she could spare, Julia ​spent assisting poor families in her neighborhood. When her resources were inadequate, she begged for food, fuel and clothing for the needy.  Read more...

Many of the resources listed here are for the Baltimore area. For resources in your area, contact the Respect Life office in your diocese.

Prayer and education on life before birth:
Spiritual Adoption
Partner Ministries

Help for homeless pregnant women:
Gabriel Network


Help for pregnancy help:


Text HELPLINE to 313131

The National Black Catholic Congress | 320 Cathedral St. Baltimore, MD 21201 | 410-547-8496
© 2018 The National Black Catholic Congress, All Rights Reserved

Services will be held at Christ the King Catholic Church:

Friday, September 21, 2018  

2:00pm.  Afternoon Viewing
6:00pm- 8:00pm Prayer Vigil and Viewing
Lead by Deacon Frank Owens

Venerable Henriette Delille

Born in 1812 in New Orleans, Louisiana, Delille was a free woman of color. At 24 years of age, she experienced a religious conversion, and proclaimed: "I believe in God. I hope in God. I love. I want to live and die for God."

In 1836, Henriette drew up the rules and regulations for devout Christian women, which eventually became the Society of the Holy Family, responding to the need for treatment of the enslaved, elderly and sick, and care and education for the poor. Read more...

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Trending Catholic News 

Executive Director, Sister Thea Bowman Black Catholic Educational Foundation

Congress 12 Pastoral Plan of Action

is Available for Download

Click image below:

Check out the

National Black Catholic Congress

Come join us as we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Ignatius Press!

DATE AND TIME: Fri, Nov 2, 2018, 6:00 PM –
Sat, Nov 3, 2018, 5:00 PM PDT

​LOCATION: Cathedral Of Saint Mary
Of The Assumption, 1111 Gough St.,
San Francisco, CA 94109

Along with Ignatius Press founder Fr. Joseph Fessio, S.J., and the women and men of Ignatius Press, you’ll be joining Cardinal Francis Arinze, Peter Kreeft, Fr. Robert Spitzer, S.J., Steve Ray, Michael D. O'Brien, and Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone.
We will begin with a dinner and talks on Friday, November 2nd, followed by Mass and a day of speakers on Saturday, November 3rd. We hope you can join us for both! 

SEPT. 14, 2018

Diocese of


We celebrate the exaltation of the cross.

Overview: The Thea Bowman Foundation (“Foundation”) is seeking an experienced and proven leader as its Executive Director.  The Executive Director is responsible for leading and managing the organization’s operational, fiscal, administrative, programmatic and strategic functions in compliance with the foundation’s mission, goals, and objectives. 

The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors.

Position Summary – Executive Director
The board of the Foundation is seeking a dynamic leader to work collaboratively with the board, existing staff, students, partner institutions of higher education, donors, and other constituents in building the next phase of the organization’s history.

Black Church Leaders Gather in New Orleans

by Catholic News Service

       Reynold Verret, president of Xavier University of Louisiana, announced July 31 that the university and its Institute for Black Catholic Studies will become the new hub for the advancement of sainthood causes of African-American Catholics.

       Verret made the announcement in the university's St. Katharine Drexel chapel. Read more...

Here's help for implementing
​the PPA



September is National Sickle Cell Awareness Month

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is
​working to raise awareness about sickle cell disease. You can help by reading and sharing their resources with friends and family.

Sickle cell disease (SCD) is an inherited blood disorder that is present at birth and affects approximately 100,000 Americans. CDC is committed to studying SCD and other blood disorders in order to improve the health and care of people with these conditions. Read more...

To learn more about these openings, click here.
Feel free to pass this email on to anyone who might be interested!

Pastoral Plan of Action

Help is Here!

A new Pastoral Plan User's Guide is now available, with step-by-step instructions on forming a committee, identifying the needs in your community, and constructing and implementing a strategic plan.

​​​​We welcome you to submit your upcoming events!

We would love to include your parish activities, upcoming organizational conferences, or arch/diocesan events. Please email your information to: and feel free to attach a pdf of your flier, advertisement, or logo for us to include.

Members of the National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus, the National Black Sisters Conference, the National Black Catholic Seminarians Association and the National Association of Black Catholic Deacons came together Juny 30 for the 2018 Joint Conference opening Mass at St. Raymond-St. Leo the Great Parish Church in New Orleans. (CNS photo/Frank J. Methe, Clarion Herald)

Eternal rest, grant unto him,

O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. 

society is becoming more informal, as some people like to call it (I prefer the term sloppy, myself, but that is just my opinion).​​

Systemic racism is pro-life issue, and Catholics must step up

Sep 19, 2018
by John Gehring, Jeanne Isler

Read story...

New center at Xavier to study inequities, diversity

AUG. 26, 2018


Houston parish's prayer garden offers spiritual oasis to parishioners, community

From The Josephite Harvest, written by Elizabeth Lowe

Ascension is hiring!

We are a company built around the call to help people enrich their lives through the fullness of the Catholic Faith. We’re passionate, mission-driven professionals and we’re looking for talented people to join our team. 

Our four current openings:
General Manager  /  Marketing Manager  /  Product Manager  /  Accounts Payable Clerk

​​​Funeral Preplanning:

Not a pleasant topic of conversation, but a necessary one

Black Catholic News 

Remembering the dress your wife wore on your first date or your husband’s favorite meal are small things that truly touch the heart when they are remembered.

It is in the little things (things that may seem unimportant) that we show our unity and find the richest symbolism. It is in the little things of the Mass that we see our unity as Catholics and the richest symbols of the liturgy.

​When non-Catholic Christians choose to join the Catholic Church, one factor that they often say attracted them to Catholicism is the beauty of our liturgies, the ritual beauty of our Mass. Yet, many of these converts also wonder why our liturgies are so structured. I find that many Catholics often wonder this, also, and I think that we are unfamiliar or uncomfortable with it because, as a society, we are moving away from formalities. Our 


Check the newsletter for a schedule of upcoming webinars

Employment Opportunities

     If you live or find yourself in Houston, you don't have to travel far to find urban spiritual sanctuary.

     Look no further than St. Francis Xavier in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, which offers parishioners and members of the community a tranquil place to reflect and pray in one of America's largest cities. Read more...

A Conversation with Stillness:
​The Ritual of Silence
​in the Mass

Direct Services through Respect Life Office

Post-Abortion Healing:

Project Rachel Baltimore


Ministry to Families Who Have Lost Children Through Miscarriage:
Holy Innocents


Pastoral Care Education through Respect Life Office

Catholic vision for compassionate care at
​end of life:

In Joyful Hope

We should reflect on what we should do with our brokenness

Black Catholic Young Adults Webinar

Featuring Lyndon Batiste and Ashley Morris, Th.M., presenting a discussion on 
​how to improve engagement and keep young adult members active in the Church.

Use of NBCC Copyrighted Material
When using NBCC photos, videos, or staff-written articles, you acknowledge and agree that the NBCC is not responsible for any action taken or activity that occurs as a result of the information provided on this website. All proprietary items of the NBCC are subject to copyright, and may be used solely in a not-for-profit manner, and attribution must be made to the NBCC by including the following disclaimer: Used with permission of the NBCC ©NBCC 2018.
Content Available through the website is provided as-is: You acknowledge that the NBCC does not make any representations or warranties about the material, data, and information, such as data files, text, computer software, code, music, audio files or other sounds, photographs, videos, or other images (collectively, the “Content”) which you may have access to. Under no circumstances is the NBCC liable in any way for any Content, including, but not limited to: any infringing Content, any errors or omissions in Content, or for any loss or damage of any kind incurred as a result of the use of any Content posted, transmitted, linked from, or otherwise accessible through or made available via the website. You agree that you are solely responsible for your reuse of Content made available through the website, including providing proper attribution.

Saturday, October 6, 2018
The Magnificat Day of Thanksgiving
The Magnificat Foundation and the Diocese of Brooklyn are proud to invite you to experience the Magnificat Day of Thanksgiving in Brooklyn, NY. It will be held on Saturday, October 6, 2018 at the Kings theatre, featuring four of America’s greatest Catholic preachers: Fr. Peter John Cameron, o.p., Bishop Robert Barron, Dr. Scott Hahn, and Seán Cardinal O’Malley, o.f.m. cap.

To guide our hearts and minds throughout the day, the program will emphasize great classical music and art, featuring a unique symphonic meditation by Pierre-Marie Dumont, which will be performed by a world-class symphony orchestra and choir. 

For tickets, click here.​​

The ideal Executive Director must be committed to and have an understand-

ing of the mission of Catholic Higher Education, hold an MA in education,

value the importance of the liberal arts, appreciate the centrality of faith in the formation of young people, and have a commitment to social justice and the growth and development of the students the Foundation is dedicated to serving. Ideally, the Executive Director will be a practicing Catholic.

The Executive Director has day-to-day responsibility for leading and overseeing the four core components that are equally fundamental to the work of the Foundation


​Help for families experiencing adverse prenatal diagnosis:
Isaiah’s Promise

Natural Family Planning:

Office of Marriage and Family Life



Office of Marriage and Family Life


Intimate Partner Violence:

Catholics for Family Peace

Date:  July 23, 2018
Position Available:  Custodial Coordinator
Position Reports to:  Manager of Custodial & Safety Services  
Department:  Physical Plant Services
FLSA Status:  Non-exempt
Schedule:  Monday-Thursday 1:30 PM – 10:00 PM; 
Friday 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM, 40 hours/week
Please apply online:  Franciscan University Staff Positions
The Custodial Coordinator is responsible for custodial services in educational and office buildings on campus. Read more...

Date:  July 23, 2018
Position Available:  Grounds Arborist
Position Reports to:  Manager of Grounds       
Department:  Grounds/Physical Plant Services
FLSA Status:  Non-exempt
Schedule:  Monday-Friday, 40 hours/week
Please apply online:  Franciscan University Staff Positions
The Grounds Arborist maintains the health and safety of the trees on campus. Read more...

Black Lives Matter demonstrators are seen near Lafayette Square in Washington Aug. 12 during the start of the white nationalists' rally "Unite the Right 2." (CNS/Tyler Orsburn)

Date:  August 23, 2018
Position Available:  Coordinator, Testing and Tutoring Services
Position Reports to:  Director, Student Academic Support Services
Department:  Student Academic Support Services
FLSA Status:  Exempt
Schedule:  Full-time; Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Please apply online:  Franciscan University Staff Positions
This position assists the Director of Student Academic Support Services (SASS) in all phases of department programming both on-ground and online, including testing services, tutoring, academic skills, peer mentoring, and disability services. Read more...

Date:  August 3, 2018
Position Available:  Head Baseball Coach/Athletic Fields Manager
Position Reports to:  Athletic Director
Department:  Athletics
FLSA Status:  Exempt
Schedule:  Full-time, Variable Hours: Primarily evening and weekend hours during the academic year
Please apply online:  Franciscan University Staff Positions
The Head Baseball Coach/Athletic Fields Manager will oversee the intercollegiate baseball program  Read more...

Respect Life Pastoral Care

Venerable Pierre Toussaint

Pierre was born in Haiti and brought to New York City as a slave, where he died a free man. 

Bérard, the plantation owner and Pierre's master, allowed Pierre's grandmother to teach her grandson how to read and write. In his early 20s, Pierre, his younger sister, his aunt, and two other house slaves accompanied their master’s son to New York City because of political unrest at home. Apprenticed to a local hairdresser, Pierre learned the trade quickly and eventually worked in the homes of rich women in New York City. Read more...

Saturday, October 6, 2018, 10:00am - 4:00pm
36th Francis Day at Agape:
Confronting Systematic Racism: 
Listening to Voices for Racial Justice

2062 Greenwich Rd, Gilbertville, MA 01031 

Speakers on White Supremacy, Immigration, DACA, deportation, racism calling us to repent and repair.
Join the Agape Community in celebrating the 36th anniversary of Francis Day. There will be guest speakers, music, African drumming, and more! For more information visit

Thu Oct 18th 9:00am - Sun 21st 9:00am

15th National Black Catholic Men's Conference
The Westin Richmond, 6631 W Broad St, Richmond, VA 23230
Know Yourself to Share Yourself - The 15th Annual National Black Catholic Men’s Conference provides a forum for African American males and youth to discern the critical issues and challenges facing them in the community. It also provides an environment of mentorship and support for those seeking a vocation in priesthood, brotherhood and the diaconate.
Cost: $150.00, College Students: $75, Youth ages 10-17 $65 (waiver form must be completed by parent or guardian) 

Make your reservations at The Westin Richmond, 6631 W. Broad St., 888-627-7786 (ask for National Black Catholic Men’s Conference Rate) $139 (single/double). Cut-off date, 9/27/18Contact: Fr. Chester Smith, S.V.D., 317-688-7111

Bishop Curtis J. Guillory

For The Good

Servant of God, Mother Mary Lange

UPDATE: A new external coordinator was appointed for the Cause of Servant of God Mary Lange. He is Dr. Emanuele Spedicato, tasked with writing the Positio to be presented to the Congregation for the Cause for Saints in order for her to progress to the next step of being named a Venerable Servant of God.

Bio: Elizabeth Lange was born in around 1794 in Santiago de Cuba, where she lived in a primarily French speaking community. Read more...