Desegregating the Altar: The Josephites and the Struggle for Black Priests, 1871–1960

Desegregating the Altar The Josephites and the Struggle for Black Priests Historically black Americans have affiliated in far greater numbers with certain protestant denominations than with the Roman Catholic church In analyzing this phenomenon scholars have sometimes allu

  • Title: Desegregating the Altar: The Josephites and the Struggle for Black Priests, 1871–1960
  • Author: Stephen J. Ochs
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 149
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Historically, black Americans have affiliated in far greater numbers with certain protestant denominations than with the Roman Catholic church In analyzing this phenomenon scholars have sometimes alluded to the dearth of black Catholic priest, but non one has adequately explained why the church failed to ordain significant numbers of black clergy until the 1930s DesegregHistorically, black Americans have affiliated in far greater numbers with certain protestant denominations than with the Roman Catholic church In analyzing this phenomenon scholars have sometimes alluded to the dearth of black Catholic priest, but non one has adequately explained why the church failed to ordain significant numbers of black clergy until the 1930s Desegregating the Altar, a broadly based study encompassing Afro American, Roman catholic, southern, and institutional history, fills that gap by examining the issue through the experience of St Joseph s Society of the Sacred Heart, or the Josephites, the only American community of Catholic priests devoted exclusively to evangelization of blacks.Drawing on extensive research in the previously closed or unavailable archives of numerous archdioceses, diocese, and religious communities, Stephen J Ochs shows that, in many cases, Roman catholic authorities purposely excluded Afro Americans from their seminaries The conscious pattern of discrimination on the part of numerous bishops and heads of religious institutes stemmed from a number of factors, including the church s weak and vulnerable position in the South and the consequent reluctance of its leaders to challenge local racial norms the tendency of Roman Catholics to accommodate to the regional and national cultures in which they lived deep seated psychosexual fears that black men would be unable to maintain celibacy as priests and a missionary approach to blacks that regarded them as passive children rather than as potential partners and leaders.The Josephites, under the leadership of John R Slattery, their first superior general 1893 1903 , defied prevailing racist sentiment by admitting blacks into their college and seminary and raising three of them to the priesthood between 1891 and 1907 This action proved so explosive, however, that it helped drive Slattery out of the church and nearly destroyed the Josephite community In the face of such opposition, Josephite authorities closed their college and seminary to black candidates except for an occasional mulatto Leadership in the development of a black clergy thereupon passed to missionaries of the Society of the Diving Word Meanwhile, Afro American Catholics, led by Professor Thomas Wyatt, refused to allow the Josephites to abandon the filed quietly They formed the Federated Colored Catholics of America and pressed the Josephites to return to their earlier policies they also communicated their grievances to the Holy See, which, in turn, quietly pressured the American church to open its seminaries to black candidates As a result, by 1960, the number of black priests and seminarians in the Josephites and throughout the Catholic church in the United States had increased significantly.Stephen Ochs s study of the Josephites illustrates the tenacity and insidiousness of institutional racism and the tendency of churches to opt for institutional security rather than a prophetic stance in the face of controversial social issues His book ably demonstrates that the struggle of black Catholics for priests of their own race mirrored the efforts of Afro Americans throughout American society to achieve racial equality and justice.

    The American Educational Studies Association, an The American Educational Studies Association, an international learned society for students, teachers, research scholars, and administrators who are interested in the foundations of education The mission of AESA is to provide a cross disciplinary forum wherein scholars gather to exchange and debate ideas generated from the above mentioned areas. Civil Rights Movement History Timeline, The War on Poverty This is a huge and controversial topic that may be too large and complex for a History Timeline article.In the mid s, Freedom Movement activists hold a wide range of views on LBJ s War on Poverty program WoP Some Movement activists, particular at the local level, see it as a sincere effort to alleviate poverty and an opportunity for them to significantly better Racism in the United States Racism in the United States has been widespread since the colonial era.Legally or socially sanctioned privileges and rights were given to white Americans but denied to all other races European Americans particularly affluent white Anglo Saxon Protestants were granted exclusive privileges in matters of education, immigration, voting rights, citizenship, land acquisition, and criminal

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