While February IS Black History Month, but, did you know that it is November that we celebrate Black Catholic History Month?
In November we honor 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.
Three popes—Saints Victor I, Melchiades, and Gelasius I—were born in Africa and led the early church though much turmoil. There are also many Black Catholic saints (Monica of Hippo, Augustine of Hippo, Perpetua, and Felicitas to name a few) and leaders (such as Rev. Augustus Tolton and Daniel Rudd) whose actions and witnesses of faith helped shape the church into what it is today.