Honoring history, celebrating achievements of Black Americans in February
February’s celebration of Black History Month, also known as African American History Month, originated in the 1920s when historian Carter G. Woodson established Negro History Week. Black History Month attained more formal recognition in the U.S. in the 70s with President Gerald R. Ford’s 1976 Bicentennial Year message about its importance. He described Black History Month as an occasion to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.” It is also an opportunity to recognize and celebrate Black Catholics in the United States and share their stories.
Celebrating Black Catholics during Black History Month (Catholic Extension, February 2019)
Viewpoint: Black History Month has a little known Catholic history as well by Shannen Dee Williams, Ph.D. (CNS via The Dialog)
Feb. 4, 2023 is the National Day of Prayer for the African American Family (annually on the first Sunday in February)
Diocese of San José Celebrates Black History Month Mass: Feb. 25, 2PM, hosted by St. Frances Cabrini Parish.
Let us bring together the people of African descent and their friends to liturgically celebrate their African heritage.
Catholics of African descent in the Diocese of San Jose are organizing this event.
From the USCCB:
On the Road to Sainthood: Leaders of African Descent
Reflections on the Movement for Black Lives
What must never be forgotten by Shannen Dee Williams, Ph.D.
Read the USCCB’s Pastoral Letter Against Racism: Open Wide our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love (bilingual)
Learn about The National Black Catholic Congress
Read about November’s celebration of Black Catholic History Month (Crux)
Who will be the first Black Catholic saint from the United States? (Video, America – The Jesuit Review)
Black History Month Resources
Read about the 2022 Theme: Black Health and Wellness (Association for the Study of African American Life and History, founders of Black History Month)
Read the Presidential Proclamation on National Black History Month 2022 (ASALH)