Antiracism Task Force
We leverage Catholic social justice teachings and Ignatian spirituality practices to facilitate parishioners’ discernment of how they are being called by God to act in this space – to ultimately transition from “not racist” to antiracist “contemplatives in action” in the process.
The Task Force also performs similar activities against racism-adjacent issues – such as antisemitism, Islamophobia, nativism, and homophobia – to help facilitate parishioner efforts to counter all forms of hate.
To accomplish this mission, we initiate reflection-focused events, moderate uncomfortable conversations, and partner with other ministries across St. Ignatius and Baltimore to facilitate parishioner action.
ANTIRACISM TASK FORCE GOALS
Goals of the St. Ignatius Antiracism Awareness Task Force for 2022 include:
- Consistently provide antiracist events and/or resources to parishioners to support continual discernment, as well as facilitating opportunities for parishioners to act upon their self-reflection;
- Develop and maintain relationships between St. Ignatius and Black Catholic communities in Baltimore – to include actively and meaningfully supporting Black Catholic-led/focused projects in the city; and
- Initiate similar activities tailored to increasing parishioner awareness and personal discernment of how to counter other forms of hate – such antisemitism, Islamophobia, nativism, and homophobia.
Ways to Get involved
Currently there are no Black American saints – and representation matters!
The Antiracism Task Force fully supports the cause of the Pastorate of Histotic St. Francis Xavier, St. Ann, and St. Wenceslaus’ campaign for the canonization of six African American candidates for sainthood.
You can learn more about their campaign, and sign a change.org petition, with the following resources. If you would like a digital version of the letter to print and physically sign yourself, feel free to reach out to the Task Force for a copy!
Support The Canonization Of The Six African American Candidates for Sainthood!
A petition to Pope Francis seeking the canonization of six African American candidates for sainthood immediately.
These women may become the first African-American Catholic saints
An activist from Baltimore started a letter-writing campaign to Pope Francis in hope that he canonizes the first Black Catholic saints from the US.
Prayer for Beatification of Mother Mary Lange:
Almighty and Eternal God, You granted Mother Lange extraordinary trust in Your providence. You endowed her with humility, courage, holiness and an extraordinary sense of service to the poor and the sick. You enabled her to found the Oblate Sisters of Providence and provided educational, social and spiritual ministry, especially to the African American community. Mother Lange’s love for all enabled her to see Christ in each person, and the pain of prejudice and racial hatred never blurred that vision.
Deign to raise her to the highest honors of the altar in order that, through her intercession, more souls may come to a deeper understanding and more fervent love of You.
Heavenly Father, glorify Your heart by also granting this favor (here mention your request), which we ask through the intercession of Your faithful servant, Mother Mary Lange. Amen.
You also can submit prayer requests and favors received at https://www.motherlange.org/favors-asked-favors-received
The following are a series of external resources—drawn from Catholic and Jesuit organizations, as well as Catholics outside of St. Ignatius—to help develop your antiracism awareness.
Jesuit Order Antiracism Resources
Clergy Antiracism Perspectives
Resources for an understanding of Catholic clergy-derived viewpoints and teaching on antiracism.
Laity Antiracism Perspectives
Resources for developing an appreciation of Catholic POC laity perspectives and/or experiences with racism.
Parishioner Antiracism Self-Reflections
The following are a series of antiracist self-reflections that have been shared by St. Ignatius parishioners. You are welcome to read all of them, or hone in on the specific reflections of parishioners whose writings may be more relevant to your particular antiracist awareness development needs.
"Jesus doesn't condemn those who are weak and trying hard; but those who are strong and aren't trying at all. For Jesus, sin is often a failure to bother to love." - Fr. James Martin, SJ I think it is the Truth that I am antiracist. I have given it much...
We are no longer [held by] distinctions deriving from the flesh – but are to bear within ourselves only the seal of God, by whom and for whom we were created. We are to be so formed and modeled by God that we are recognized as belonging to God’s one family. – St....
I was a high school senior, riding a Baltimore County school bus full of my fellow (white) students, on our way to an athletic event. The conversation on the bus was about two well-known African American athletes, one known for his political and cultural stances, the...
I grew up a white kid, in a white, urban, neighborhood, in a white parish, within a city that was 40% African American. In my eight years at St. Bernard school, there was one African American student. No African American families were parishioners, although large...
“As we are transformed into the image of our God, we learn to love others as Jesus does. Such self-sacrificing love could really change our world.” – Illio Delio, Claire of Assisi, p. ixThe chronic injustice and blind prejudice baked into everyday life for people of...
I grew up in the 1970s south in a white family that certainly didn’t think of itself as racist (it was). It was an era of still-overt racism while a new, arguably more insidious form of covert racism also flourished. I thought little of race, to be perfectly honest,...
“[Racism] says not everyone is made in His image. What a horrible lie...” — Gloria Purvis, former host of the Catholic radio show, “Morning Glory,” and the television series, “Authentically Free at Last”Does your significant other share your views on racism? How...
“Be enlightened by wisdom and understanding and guided by the Holy Spirit to effectively work to overcome the diseases of racism, injustice and indifference that disfigure the face of our common family.” - Pope FrancisAs a Catholic African American Person of Color...
“When we talk about race today, with all the pain packed into that conversation, the Holy Spirit remains in the room. This doesn't mean the conversations aren’t painful, aren’t personal, aren’t charged with emotion. But it does mean we can survive.” — Austin Channing...
Get Involved with other ministries
If your self-reflection leads you to feel you are being called to antiracist action, please consider exploring the following formal and informal opportunities to do so within St. Ignatius Antiracism-related St. Ignatius Committees.