Tuesday November 1, 2005

Celebrating Black Catholic History Month

Events will be held at the University of Dayton throughout November.

The University of Dayton will host a series of lectures and events throughout November to celebrate the history of black Catholics and their contributions to the church.

The University of Dayton is one of the first Catholic colleges or universities to offer an extensive program marking Black Catholic History Month. Plans call for the "Father Joseph M. Davis, S.M., Black Catholic History Month Celebration" to be an annual event at UD, which will continue to invite scholars to campus to highlight the contributions of black Catholics.

The schedule of events is below.

* 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 2, Sears Recital Hall in the Jesse Philips Humanities Center: The Rev. Clarence Williams, C.PP.S, director of black Catholic ministry for the Archdiocese of Detroit, will deliver a presentation titled "Stolen, Lost and Misplaced: A Discourse that Gives Voice to Black Catholic History."

* 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9, Sears Recital Hall: Diane Batts Morrow, associate professor of history and African-American studies at the University of Georgia and the award-winning historian of the Oblate Sisters of Providence, will present "'The Holy Habit We Have the Honor to Wear:' The Identity of the Early Oblate Sisters of Providence as Women of Virtue." 

* 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 16, Sears Recital Hall: moral theologian the Rev. Bryan Massingale of Marquette University will present "'The Beloved Community' Revisited: Katrina, King and Catholic Social Teaching."

* 6 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 20, Immaculate Conception Chapel: the Feast of Christ the King, a Eucharistic celebration in the African-American Catholic tradition. The Rev. Paul Marshall, S.M., University of Dayton rector, will preside. Wylie Howell, music director for St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Cincinnati, will conduct a choir comprising members from St. Joseph's, St. Benedict the Moor in Dayton and the University of Dayton.

The University of Dayton will honor the memory of the Rev. Joseph M. Davis, S.M., during its Black Catholic History Month celebration. Davis was a Dayton native, graduate of the University of Dayton and one of the first African-American Marianists. He also founded the National Office of Black Catholics.

Black Catholic History Month was first celebrated in November 1990. During November, All Saints Day is held, making it an appropriate time to honor all the saints of African descent recognized by the Catholic Church.

There are more than 200 million Catholics of African heritage throughout the world.

For media interviews or more information, contact Cecilia A. Moore, assistant professor of religious studies, at (937) 229-4559 or cecilia.moore@notes.udayton.edu or the Rev. Paul Marshall, S.M., at (937) 229-4122 or paul.marshall@notes.udayton.edu.