Currently there exist five separate causes of canonization for five extraordinary African-Americans in the United States. Each are at a different stage in the canonization process, but as of July 31, 2018, various Church leaders are uniting to assist these causes, hoping that their joint effort will help progress each cause closer to sainthood.
According to a press release, Xavier University and its Institute for Black Catholic Studies (IBCS) “will have as its goal the gathering of scholarly work and relevant academic studies for the purpose of elevating the respective causes for each of the candidates for Sainthood: the Venerable Pierre Toussaint, Venerable Henriette Delille S.S.F., Mother Mary Elizabeth Lange, O.S.P., Father Augustus Tolton, and Julia Greeley.”
The IBCS is further supported by the Joint Conference of Black Catholic Clergy, Black Sisters, Black Catholic Seminarians and Black Catholic Deacons.
Xavier President Dr. Reynold Verret thought it was fitting that such an endeavor would begin at Xavier University. “It is both appropriate and significant that this joint effort to promote the cause of Sainthood for these six extraordinary individuals should originate here at Xavier University of Louisiana, the only historically Black and Catholic University in this nation and the home of the Institute for Black Catholic Studies.”
For more information on the causes listed above, visit one of our articles below.
Venerable Henriette Delille, a Catholic woman of color on the road to sainthood
Celebrating Black Catholic History Month: Meet Mother Mary Elizabeth Lange
From American slave to Catholic priest: Meet “Good Father Gus”
Saintly Former Slave a Model of Mercy