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Calendar of Events​​

With the holidays coming up, it is a perfect opportunity to not only teach your children the importance of giving, but to put it into action. The process of helping children to understand that is better to give than to receive can be difficult. After all who doesn’t like to receive a gift, right? However, teaching your children this valuable lesson is one of the most rewarding things you can give them.

Talking to your children is great first step in showing them the importance of giving and helping others. Find ways to bring up the topic during every day conversations you have when you are together as family, such as when you’re having dinner. You can talk about events happening in your community, stories you’ve heard about other people’s act of kindness, or you can spend time going around the table and talking about one kind act each family did that day. Read more...

"O Come, O Come, Emmanuel! "

Understanding the Function of Advent Within the Liturgical Year

From the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Vatican Council II, December 4, 1963

When I Hear Pro-Life…
By: Natasha P. Wilson, Ph.D.
Coordinator of Education and Outreach
Office of Respect Life Ministry
Archdiocese of Baltimore

QUESTION:Why do I have to go to a priest for confession instead of going straight to God? After all, the Bible says that "there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" (1 Tim. 2:5).

ANSWER: The Lord does want us to come to him when we fall into sin. He wants to bring us forgiveness so much that he gave the apostles the power to forgive sins. This power given to the apostles and their successors does not come from within them but from God.  Read more...

Sacraments 101: Penance
​(why we confess)

Understanding Our Faith

The National Domestic Violence Hotline 
1-800-799-7233 (SAFE)

National Dating Abuse Helpline 

Americans Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center 
International Toll-Free (24/7) 
1-866-USWOMEN (879-6636)

National Child Abuse Hotline/Childhelp 
1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453)

Steubenville (FUS), and facilitate communication to our internal and external audiences using consistent and continuous brand messaging.  This person will assist numerous FUS departments with creating digital media for IMC campaigns that drive traffic to FUS online platforms including websites, social media channels, e-blasts, and e-newsletters that further conversion with tracking and measurable results for ROI.

Assist with the creation and management of the newest version of the main University website,
Maintain and update current websites and SPAs, as directed by the Web Communications Director, including the University Bulletin,, the MarCom Resource Center, styles for the JRM portals, recruitment SPAs, and others
Develop and deploy new websites and SPAs, as directed
Provide consultation to superiors and, as directed, to other departments on campus regarding outside vendors to assist in fulfilling University web needs

Who Is Santa, and What Does He Have to Do With Christmas?

Angie Mosteller

Black Catholic News 

Employment Opportunities


Teaching Children the Importance of Kindness and Giving

In Parenting by Educational Playcare

Sister Pat Haley funeral Mass, shown live on Vimeo below:

Feeling Stressed Out?
Would You Rather Be Out and About?
From the Anxiety and Depression Association of America

The holidays are an exciting time of good cheer, warm family traditions, and spending time with friends. Or, are they?

For many people, the idea of entering a crowded room and chatting up coworkers or strangers at a party, exchanging gifts with friends, traveling from home, or attending large family gatherings can produce intense anxiety, depression, or both. Read more...

Listen to "Myths and Realities of the Holiday Blues" podcast

Whenever you begin to pray, say "I unite my prayers to all the prayers being prayed around the world in this present moment."

O Good Shepherd, You never cease to seek out the lost, to call home the stray, comfort the frightened, and to bind the wounded. I ask you to bring all our fallen away brothers and sisters back to the practice of the Faith, and to remove all obstacles that prevent them from receiving your abundant mercy, which flows sacramentally through the heart of the Church. Make Your Power known to them today in every situation.

Through the intercession of Mary, Mother of God, their Guardian Angels, their Patron Saints and the every-prayerful St. Monica, may you pardon their sins and unshackle them from whatever hinders their freedom to come Home. For You O Good Shepherd, have loved us to the end, offered yourself to the Father for the salvation of all.  Amen.

Prayers for the return of a non-practicing Catholic also should be accompanied by safrificial and private acts of fasting, and almsgiving in their name.

What is liturgy?

  • The official, corporate, communal prayer of the Church.

What comprises liturgy?

  • Mass
  • Divine Office (Morning and Evening Prayer)
  • Sacraments

How important is liturgical participation for the Catholic?

From the Constitution on the Sacred Uturgy ...
7. . .. Christ always truly associates the Church with himself in this great work wherein God is perfectly glorified and the recipients made holy. The Church is the Lord's beloved Bride who calls to him and through him offers worship to the eter­nal Father. Rightly, then, the liturgy is considered as an exercise of the priestly of­fice of Jesus Christ. In the liturgy, by means of signs perceptible to the senses, hu­man sanctification is signified and brought about in ways proper to each of these signs; in the liturgy the whole public worship is performed by the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ, that is, by the Head and his members.

From this it follows that every liturgical celebration, because it is an action of Christ the Priest and of his Body which is the Church, is a sacred action surpassing all others; no other action of the Church can equal its effec­tiveness by the same title and to the same degree.

What is the most important goal in the liturgy?
From the Constitution on the Sacred Uturgy ...
14. The Church earnestly desires that all the faithful be led to that full, conscious, and active participation in liturgical celebrations called for by the very nature of the liturgy. Such participation by the Christian people as "a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's own people" (1 Pt 2:9; see 2:4-5) is their right and duty by reason of their baptism. In the reform and promotion of the liturgy, this full and active participation by all the people is the aim to be consid­ered before all else. For it is the primary and indispensable source from which the faithful are to derive the true Christian spirit.

Find Your Holiday Happiness:
Manage Anxiety and Depression

Prayer of St. Teresa
of Avila

Christ has no body now but yours.

No hands, no feet on earth but yours.

Yours are the eyes through which he looks compassion on the world.

Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good.

Yours are the hands through which he blesses all the world.

Yours are the hands,

yours are the feet,

Yours are the eyes,

you are his body.

Christ has no body now on earth

but yours.


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

National Sexual Assault Hotline 
1-800-656-4673 (HOPE)

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 
1-800-273-8255 (TALK)

National Center for Victims of Crime 

National Human Trafficking Resource Center/Polaris Project 
Call: 1-888-373-7888 | Text: HELP to BeFree (233733)

If Christ is to be born in our hearts, we'd best get the throne room ready

How do you know when it’s time to take out the trash? “When the stink becomes unbearable” is a reliable, if inadequate, answer.

“When the volume of trash leaves no room for any new good gift” is a less obvious but nonetheless accurate answer. Read more...

by Kaylah Jackson via

The contributions of over 800 African American women who sorted mail in a segregated unit during WWII were recognized last month in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, with a monument erected in their honor.

“No mail, no morale,” was the motto of the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion, the U.S. Army’s only all-African American and all-female unit during the Second World War.

Often referred to as the “Six-Triple-Eight,” the unit was made of up 824 enlisted and 31 officer women, who were originally from the Women’s Army Corps, Army Service Forces and Army Air Forces. Read more...

February 2019
Feb. 13-16, 2019

Plan to Attend the
Mid-Atlantic Congress
(MAC) in Baltimore, MD

Learn about current trends and best
practices. Renew your enthusiasm
and energy for ministry. Enrich your
spiritual life. Grow professionally
and as a pastoral leader. Watch the
video below to learn more, or click here to register. Below are sessions that may be of special interest for African American Catholic Ministry:

  • Secretariat of Cultural Diversity in the Church - Building Intercultural Competence for Ministers (BICM) Training, 5 modules, a MAC Intensive, Wednesday February 13 - Friday February 15. 
  • Donna Grimes, USCCB Cultural Diversity - African American Affairs and Joe Paprocki of Loyola Press, Bootcamp for Catechetical leaders, Thursday, February 14, 8:30 - 11:30 am, six critical aspects of catechetical leadership drawing from the Effective Catechetical Leader series from NCCL and Loyola Press. Sponsor: Loyola Press.
  • Deacon Larry Oney, Archdiocese of New Orleans - keynote address, mega workshop on Thursday February 14 at 2:30 pm. 
  • Michael & Charlene HowardA Love Language That's Full of Joy, inspired by Pope Francis' Amoris Laetitia (On Joy of Love in the Family), Friday February 15 at 1:30 pm, will reflect on the languages of love essential for the domestic church; participants will glean real-life practices for using their love language to reveal God's love in marriage and single life.​

Prayer for the Return of Non-practicing Catholics

There’s no ‘typical survivor,’ and other facts to know about domestic violence
By Rachel Nania | October 16, 2018

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Confronting the Legacy of Racial Terror
in the Era of Mass Incarceration
Presented September 12, 2018
Presented by Fr. Dustin Feddon, Ph.D.
and Maria Morrison, MSW of Equal Justice Initiative (EJI)

Where is My Faith? Webinar for Young Adults
Presented August 15, 2018
Ashley Morris and Lyndon Batiste, presenters

Over the Christmas season, Santa's image is everywhere, but do we really understand the history and origin of one of the biggest traditions? When the kids inevitably ask, “Who is Santa?” what do we say? As with any question from our children, we can use it as a teaching opportunity. Let's take a look at the origin of Santa Claus, the history behind how his meaning has evolved over time, and some of the traditions behind his name. Read more...

Trending Catholic News 

What Do Catholics Really Believe About Purgatory?
November 1, 2017

By Nick Rabiipour

Purgatory is probably one of the most misunderstood Catholic doctrines today, and many do not believe that it really exists.  In this article I’m briefly going to cover what purgatory is, the biblical foundation for purgatory, and the history of the teaching on purgatory in the Catholic Church.  I will not specifically cover in detail prayer for the dead or indulgences, which you can read about here: 20 Ways to Pray for the Holy Souls in Purgatory.

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), purgatory is a “final purification” (CCC 1031) which is afforded to “all who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified” so that they might “achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven” (CCC 1030). Read more...

How to Defend the Sacrament of Confession

by Jason Evert

Advent 2018

Deacon Larry Oney provides outreach to Uganda through the Hope & Purpose Ministry

Operation Faith Lift…
‘Stand Ready with Shoes to Announce
the Good News!’
NBCC Staff Article
Some Baltimore parishes take their ‘marching orders’ to go out into the world and make new disciples literally. Known as ‘Operation Faith Lift,” people from Catholic parishes take their evangelization message to the streets of their neighborhoods, and have been doing it since the program’s inception in the year 2000.

In year 2000 as the Church celebrated “The Jubilee Year”, Black Catholics were ready to share the good news of Jesus with their neighbors and anyone they met. They were inspired and faithfully formed through an evangelization initiative known as “Operation Faith Lift”. Read more...

The 2018 NBCC Webinar Series

Use of NBCC Copyrighted Material
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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.


October [was] Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and the experts at DASH, a D.C.-based nonprofit and domestic violence shelter, shared some facts on domestic violence, plus some ways the public can help local survivors. Read more...​

A new normal and the business of getting healthy
“I had to become comfortable with my new normal, and be able to look in the mirror, accept myself and still feel beautiful.”

As a teenager, I remember my mother complaining of pain in her breasts because of a cyst. So, when I felt a lump in my own breast, the first person I talked to was my mother. I asked her if it seemed similar to what she’d experienced. She told me, “I’m not a doctor. You need to go to a doctor and see what’s going on.” I thought, “I’m getting older, I just turned 30, I’m just getting cysts like my mother experienced. Read more..

Now Available:

Pastoral Plans of Action from Past Congresses

These instruments, issued shortly after each Congress, provide action steps for addressing the topics of concern presented during the Congress events.

To download copies of the different Pastoral Plans, click button below. 

Deacon Larry Oney – Mission Trip to Uganda, East Africa 2018

Deacon Larry Oney, founder and president of Hope and Purpose Ministries, traveled to Uganda, East Africa in June/July 2018.  Read more

A photo of the late Benedictine Father Cyprian Davis, center, a renowned chronicler of black Catholic history, is seen at St. Katharine Drexel Chapel of Xavier University of Louisiana in New Orleans surrounded by pictures of four candidates for sainthood. Father Davis' work was integral to bringing attention nationally and internationally to the ways that people of African descent helped to develop Catholicism from the earliest days. (CNS photo/Christine Bordelon, Clarion Herald)

From the 1920s through the 1960s more than 300,000 African-Americans across the country chose to enter into communion with the Roman Catholic Church. Read more...

National Resource Center on Domestic Violence 
1-800-537-2238 and

Futures Without Violence: The National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence 

National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health
1-312-726-7020 ext. 2011

“When we give

cheerfully and accept

gratefully, everyone

is blessed.”  

― Maya Angelou

Advent  from Holidays Calendar
Marking the beginning of the Christian liturgical year across many different Western churches, and beginning the period of preparation and celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas, Advent runs between 22 and 28 days. In the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church, the Anglican Church, the Presbyterian Church, the Methodist Church, and the Western Rite of the Orthodox Church, It begins on the Sunday nearest St. Andrew’s Day (November 30th) and then runs the next three Sundays – and ends on the nearest Sunday to Christmas Eve or on Christmas Eve itself. However, in the Mozarabic Rite of the Catholic Church and the Ambrosian Rite of the Catholic Church, this holiday begins on the sixth Sunday before Christmas or the Sunday following St. Martin’s Day (November 11th).

The History of Advent
While some people claim that the Advent Season began with St. Peter, there is little evidence of that assertion.  Read more...

How do I encounter Christ in the liturgy?
7. To accomplish so great a work, Christ is always present in his Church, especially in its liturgical celebrations. He is present in the sacrifice of the Mass, not only in the person of his minister, "the same now  offering,  through  the  ministry of priests, who formerly offered himself on the cross," but especially un­ der the eucharistic elements. By his power he is present in the sacra­ ments, so that when a man baptizes it is really Christ himself who baptiz­ es, He is present in his word since it is he himself who speaks when the holy Scriptures are read in the Church. He is present, lastly, when the Church prays and sings, for he  promised:  "Where  two  or  three  are gath­ ered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them" (Mt 18:20).  Read more...

Choosing Catholicism and celebrating Black Catholic History Month
Catholic News Service  |  22 October 2018

Position Available:  Front End Developer

Position Reports to:  Web Communications Director
Department:  Marketing & Communications (MarCom)
Schedule:  Full-time; Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. 
Please apply online:  Franciscan University Staff Positions

The Front End Developer will create and manage University websites and Single Page Applications (SPAs) that support the mission and vision of Franciscan University of 

Forgiving ourselves and being forgiven: Taking out the trash for Advent 

Fr Robert McTeigue, SJ | Dec 05, 2018

The countdown to Christmas is well and truly underway - it's
time to get MoneySaving before Santa's sleigh lands. Many
complain of being skint in January, so avoid this by following
our sackful of tips.

We cover everything from budgeting for the big day to how to get
cheap fancy perfume and when to book train tickets in advance.
And for those who celebrate Eid, Chanukah or owt else, don't
​worry - for the most part the same tips apply.

Don't plan the perfect Christmas -
first work out what you can afford

Before you start planning, consider this: many list every lusted-for
item, gifts for all, and a corking meal, then only afterwards consider:
How will I pay for it?" That's a recipe for ending up broke.  Instead,
calculate your budget (see our free Budget Planner), and ask: "What
can I afford to spend on Christmas?"

Domestic Violence and Mental Health Resources

  • Ralph McCloud, Director, Catholic Campaign for Human Development, Prophetic Discipleship - Removing the Sting of Poverty in Our Communities, Saturday February 16 at 8:30 am, focusing on Corporeal Works of Mercy 5 practical steps to eradicating the sting of poverty eroding our communities; these steps will give direction to heads of households to strengthen their home church family and broader communities.
  • Charlene Howard M.A.,- Through Many - One: The Art of Universal Accompaniment, Saturday February 16 at 12:30 pm, workshop will explore what "Catholic" means and how the meaning is evident in today's Church; includes challenges to fostering Catholic life in our parishes and schools; will share best practices and practical applications in viewing Missional Discipleship as the framework for embracing, cultivating and being enriched by the diversity in our Church.
  • Michael Howard M.A., founder of Eat the Scroll Ministry, Saturday February 16 at 2:00 pm. Sr. Thea Bowman galvanized the world by calling for diversity in the Church; explore her philosophy of Cosmic Spirituality, develop strategies for building relationships with parishioners from other cultures and loving one another as God loves us.


Early registration ends on 12/15/18

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

​​​​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.

The Human Life Issues and the Challenges to the Dignity of the Human Person
Presented October 17, 2018
Dr. Natasha Wilson, Sandra Coles-Bell, and Deacon Al Turner, presenters

When I hear pro-life, I think: What does

it mean to be pro-life? I’ve never heard

of it.
When I hear pro-life, I think: Pro-birth.
When I hear pro-life, I think: Anti-woman.
When I hear pro-life, I think: That’s not me because I had an abortion.
When I hear pro-life, I think: Pro-Republican.
When I hear pro-life, I think: ‘You only care about the baby before they are born, not after they are born’.
When I hear pro-life, I think: I am involved in pro-life ministry: I feed the poor, I work for an end to violence in the city, I take care of my family, I take care of the elderly, I mentor children, etc.
When I hear pro-life, I think: No one has ever invited me to get involved in pro-life ministry.When you hear the term pro-life, what do you think? In this article, I hope to address, as succinctly as possible, these thoughts about what it means to be pro-life. Read more...


Patricia (“Pat”) Ann Haley, SCN, 73, was born in Columbus, GA. She died on Tuesday, November 27, 2018 at Nazareth, KY. She was a professed Sister of Charity of Nazareth for 52 years.

In September 1963, Sister Pat entered the novitiate of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth as the Congregation’s first African American postulant and was the first African American Sister to serve in the Archdiocese of Louisville. She is a founding member of the National Black Sisters’ Conference. She continued to be a vital and inspirational member of the Conference until her death, attending the 50 year anniversary celebration in New Orleans this past August.

Have you ever asked someone what their plans are for the holidays, and you to your surprise they told you they were spending it alone? No one says it quite like that, of course. They might talk about how they have been looking forward to some solitude and reading, and not having to do anything but veg. But in reality they may be alone for the holidays because of other circumstances out of their control.

Their kids may be spending Christmas with an ex-spouse out of state. Or perhaps they’re a college student, or a young working professional who just can’t quite afford flying home this Christmas. Or perhaps a widow, or widower who’s kids have long since moved away and started their own families, and are not going to be able to visit this year. Read more...

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


Posted by Carolyn Bell | Christmas Spirit Year Round, Holiday Articles & Stories