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IN THE SPOTLIGHT


Subcommittee on African American Affairs e-newsletter: is now available online. The October/November edition includes information about Rebuilding the Bridge, Best Practices, Black Catholic History Month in November and much more!

50th Anniversary Initiative - Rebuilding the Bridge: In the coming year, the country will celebrate several 50th anniversaries of civil rights milestones. Check out the 50th Anniversary Initiative page for more information about these events and the contribution of Catholics to this movement.

Love Thy Neighbor As Thyself:  We are pleased to present excerpts from Love Thy Neighbor As Thyself: U.S. Catholic Bishops Speak Against Racism. These short essays from several bishops articulate the perspectives of different cultural groups, address racism as a whole and provide suggestions to combat racism.

30th Anniversary of What We Have Seen and Heard: Take a look at the Black Bishops' Pastoral Letter on Evangelization to see what the bishops were saying and how it is still relevant today. Now available in Spanish!

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African American

 

The Subcommittee on African American Affairs is the official voice of the African American Catholic community. The subcommittee attends to the needs and aspirations of African American Catholics regarding issues of pastoral ministry, evangelization, social justice, worship, development of leaders and other areas of concern. The subcommittee also seeks to be a resource for the all Bishops and the entire Catholic Church in the United States. It aims to articulate the socio-cultural dimension of the African American Catholic community and identify or create resources that would allow for an authentic integration of the richness of African American Catholic culture and the Catholic Church in the United States.

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Most Reverend Shelton J. Fabre,

Bishop, Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux
Chairman of the Subcommittee on African American Affairs


Advent Message from Most Rev. Shelton J. Fabre
Chairman, Subcommittee on African American Affairs

Greetings in this holy season of Advent!!!  With the beginning of the season of Advent we embark upon a new Liturgical Year.  The Liturgical Year is the structured format that the Roman Catholic Church undertakes in accepting the challenge to reflect upon and to live the reality of God’s love in our lives.  Advent means coming or arrival, and the season of Advent invites us to reflect on the coming or the arrival of Jesus Christ to us in two ways.  First, the season of Advent invites us to pray and reflect on the fact that Jesus will come again at the end of time.  Therefore, the liturgies of the beginning of Advent are filled with readings about the second coming of Jesus Christ at the end of time.  However, on December 17th, the second focus of Advent emerges. The second focus of Advent shifts our reflection and prayer to preparing to celebrate again during the Christmas season the first coming of Jesus in his historical birth at Bethlehem.

"...the character that is given to the season of Advent by its prayers and readings are among the most hope-filled images found in the Liturgical Year."

Each season of the Liturgical Year has its own unique character that is supported by the readings and prayers of the different celebrations that are a part of it.   In my opinion, the character that is given to the season of Advent by its prayers and readings are among the most hope-filled images found in the Liturgical Year.  Some of the most beautiful images in scripture are found in the prophecy of Isaiah, and some of the most powerful of these images have become heralds and hallmarks of the season of Advent.  The readings from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah that will be used during the liturgies of Advent will provide us again with great reflection themes during this season of preparation and anticipation.  They are images of the peace that God has promised to us when the Kingdom of God is fully established.  Some of these promises are partially available to us now, but they will all be fully available when Jesus Christ comes again in his glory.  So I encourage you to stay with the season of Advent during its very short time span, and I encourage you not to surrender too quickly in prayer and anticipation to the arrival of the joy of the Christmas season.  The season of Advent has much to tell and to teach those who will be faithful to its call and character.

"...stay with the season of Advent during its very short time span..."

As African-American Catholics and as the Church universal, the season of Advent speaks very loudly to us with regard to our hope that is rooted in the Lord.  I pray that in your life you will use the season of Advent to prepare the way of the Lord to come to your heart, and prepare to welcome the Lord when he comes in glory at the end of time.  I pray that you will also remember that through the power of the Holy Spirit the Lord is indeed always with us, right here and right now.  May all the hope and promise of Advent be yours!  Peace.

+Shelton J. Fabre  

 




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