Saturday, August 29, 2015

Black Catholics look forward to pope, have own issues

Black people have been part of what became the Catholic Church since Simon of Cyrene helped Jesus carry the cross toward Calvary, but Sheena Turner, 22, says she still gets the question:

"You're Catholic?"

Msgr. Federico A. Britto, pastor of St. Cyprian Church in West Philadelphia, says he gets a different query:

"You're black and a priest?"

What is to some the confounding juxtaposition of black and Catholic represents a persistent image of the Catholic Church as a white institution, and the assumption that if you're black, you're Protestant, said Deacon William Bradley, director of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Office for Black Catholics.

But when Pope Francis visits next month, the region's black Catholics will be among the welcoming faithful, while hoping for more representation, recognition, and greater numbers in a church that has been a spiritual home for centuries.


No comments: