Join us for Morning Glory tomorrow on EWTN radio with Mike Gonzalez of Heritage on the passing of Fidel Castro…

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Join us as we try to wash away the Monday Blues after a long Thanksgiving holiday weekend on EWTN radio! Monsignor Charles Pope will be back with us on Morning Glory and we’ll look at the day’s news including a possible election recount called by Hillary Clinton after her strong words to Trump about the need to ‘accept’ the results!…

With the passing of Cuba’s longest running leader, Fidel Castro over the weekend who died at the age of 90 after he handed over the reigns of power in 2008 as his health was wavering, we talk with Mike Gonzalez of the Heritage Foundation about what we might expect with regard to Cubans and US relations.. Cuban Americans continue to witness Castro’s horrors. Christians will have no choice but to pray that Fidel Castro avoids eternal damnation, but Cuban Americans will continue to bear witness to the horrors he committed here on earth. Now more than ever, the US must reverse President Obama’s policy engaging the Castro regime if America wishes to see a democratic and prosperous Cuba.

Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List joins to look at what we might expect from the legislative agenda now that we have a Republican-controlled House and Senate – and White House with pro life leaders at the helm. Learn more about their work at http://www.sba-list.org.

Did you know that November is Black Catholic History Month?

This month, we’re honoring the men and women from Africa who have pioneered the faith! Many forget that Christianity didn’t start in Europe. Black Catholics have had a huge impact on the history and traditions of Christianity. The church has been celebrating Black Catholic History Month since 1990 when the National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus of the United States instigated it. November seemed appropriate because it holds special days for two prominent African Catholics: St. Augustine whose birthday is on November 13, and St. Martin de Porres whose feast day is celebrated on November 3.

We’ll celebrate this important month looking at Professor Steven Och’s 1993 book: Desegregating the Altar: The Josephites and the Struggle for Black Priests 1871-1960.

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. 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.

We love to hear from you as our conversation is a two-way street! Please leave any comments or questions here and we’ll make sure to share on-air! You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter via @EWTN, or email the show directly: MorningGlory@EWTN.com!

Blessings,

Alyssa Murphy

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