10 Things to Know About the  BCI
March, 2017
  Just like the Faith, the Drum works for us if you pass it on.



1. Let Us Pray For

People who chose to shoot another person during Black History Month in the Archdiocese.
Lent is a great time to come to Jesus!

  Please submit all prayer requests to
2. Next opportunity to join the BCI
Black Catholics in LENT
A Force against violence!
A Workshop Responding with Faith
Saturday, March 25, 2017
Holy Name of Mary 
Ministry Center
11159 S. Loomis 
10:00 am 

RSVP required for lunch
To register by phone call 312.577.0475
3.  On The Air 
Deacon John Cook hosts this weekly half-hour program that explores a wide range of topics relevant to Chicago's Black and Catholic communities.  Deacon Cook serves at St. Felicitas Parish in Chatham, and is very involved in overseeing youth programs in the Bronzeville neighborhood. 

Tune in and Call in

Let’s talk about faith!

March 7th  - Fr. Michael Trail from St. Damian in Oak Forest

March 14 - Helen Dumas - Principal St. Sabina - 2017 African American Heritage Celebration Honoree

March 21 - Dr. Elfriede Wedam - Advanced Lecturer, Department of Sociology-Loyola University and Phillip Brady - Workshop against                     violence

March 28 - Mary Lou Jennings - Director Sr. Thea Bowman Scholarship Foundation

Make Them Hear You!   

   4.  Cause of Father Tolton 

  Update on the Cause

  • The Diocese of Springfield has filed the canonical report on the exhumation in Rome February 5, 2017

  • Officials are preparing the 'positio' to be analyzed by a historical commission and the board of Cardinals who sit on the Congregation for Causes of Saints.  

  • These two bodies are asked to make a recommendation to the Holy Father.
  5.  BCI Social Action
  6. Honor, Honor, unto the dying Lamb!
Congratulations to

Helen Dumas, St. Sabina
Denise Spells, St. Ethelreada

2017 Black Heritage Award recipients
Jessica Booker and Markel Anderson

recipients of the Black Heritage Jr. Award

     7.  National Black Catholic Congress

Registration is Open

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me: Act justly, love goodness, and walk humbly with your God

National Black Catholic Congress XII

Date:  July 6, 2017, 3:00 pm
Venue:  Hyatt Regency Orlando
Location:  Orlando, Florida

Congress topic may include:

Catholic Family Life
Catholic Social Teaching
Domestic Violence
Health and Wellness
Human Life/Human Dignity
Mental Health
Poverty and Racism
Theology of the Body
Youth and Young Adult Tracks

Plus many others...
 Check the National Black Catholic Conference (NBCC) website frequently as we continue to update information.

Keynote Speakers for National Black Catholic Congress
  Dr. Shannon Dee Williams, Historian
Mr. Bryan Stevenson
Founder and Executive Director
Equal Justice Initiative
Montgomery, Alabama 

Peter Kodwo Appiah Cardinal Turkson President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace Archbishop emeritus of Cape Coast, Ghana 

     8.  BCI Annual Retreat
9.  The BCI received the following announcements from parishes, schools and organizations for the purpose of sharing information and invitation.  

Please seek permission to publish items in this newsletter from the pastor or person responsible for the sponsoring agent.  Please do not violate copyrights.  

  Don’t Miss


6th Annual One Earth Film Festival

March 3-12, 2017!


the Midwest’s premier environmental film fest, returns for its 6th dynamic season.

Featuring 30 films in 47 screenings at 39 venues throughout Chicagoland and neighboring suburbs, as well as at venues in DuPage and Lake Counties -- this year’s festival promises compelling films that offer something for everyone -- from citizens just beginning to learn about sustainability, to already ecologically-minded folks, to families with children as young as three , to teens and young adults.  

Environmental thought leaders, spanning a variety of different topics, will lead discussion and programming immediately following each screening, leaving audiences equipped to take action and deepen their commitment to a sustainable future.


Sunday,  March 5, 2017
"The Age of Consequences"
Old St. Patrick’s Church
700 W. Adams
Chicago, IL

Sunday,  March 12, 2017
        "Chicago’s True Nature"             
St. James Catholic Church
2907 S. Wabash Avenue
Chicago, IL


Chicago Southland

Catholic Men's Conference 

Presented By

Rev. Bishop Joseph N. Perry and

Catholic Men Chicago Southland (CMCS) 

Father Larry Richards 

"Be A Man" 

When: Saturday, April 22, 2017 – 8:30am to 12:30pm 

Where: Holy Ghost Parish, 700 E. 170th St, South Holland, IL 60473 (MAP) 

Keynote:  Father Larry Richards 

Mass & Closing Challenge: His Excellency, Bishop Joseph N. Perry, of Chicago 

Master of Ceremonies: Mr. Frank J Casella, Executive Director CMCS 

More information: 708-374-7729 or email us at [email protected] 

All Mail-In Tickets Must Be Post Marked by 4.17.2017.  Download the Enrollment Form Below. Tickets are NOT sold at the door.
We will email / phone call your confirmation once we receive your reservation.

  Louis University Job Posting 

University Minister 
Assistant Director/Coordinator of Social Justice Formation

Function: Reporting to the Director of University Ministry, the Assistant Director of University Ministry/Coordinator of Social Justice Formation develops and supports programs that encourage students to live and understand social justice from a Catholic perspective.  The Assistant Director will also manage the Ministry facilities (Sancta Alberta Chapel, Miguel Center for University Ministry and the LaGrippe Pastoral Center), oversee the program calendar, and serve on standing committees.  The Assistant Director will work closely with the Director to lead the Department in visioning and in responding to opportunities.

  Ministerial Vision
  • Sees him/herself as a minister – one who accompanies people on their faith journey, who provokes and challenges people to live good lives, who comforts and counsels those in need, and who calls people together in the spirit of association.
  • Incorporates student leaders into programs.
  • Participates in, at least, yearly professional development (books, conferences, classes) and formation experiences (retreats, days of reflection).
  • Models respectful, collaborative and active support of the University’s Mission and of Catholic and Lasallian higher education through dedicated job performance and exemplary service to the University’s many constituencies.
  • Be an effective, contributing member of a ministry team that develops a complex ministry program in service to undergraduates, graduates, faculty, and staff.
  Responsibilities Include:
  • Lead pilgrimages to locations significant to the movement for social justice during breaks and in May.
  • Organize the Catalyst Social Justice Team & Retreat.
  • Moderate a chapter of Catholic Relief Services or another organization that promotes social justice.
  • Write an annual Social Justice Education plan for the next 2-4 years.
  • Collect data on students involved with social justice education for program development and institutional reporting.
  • Keep Sancta Alberta, the Miguel Center, and the Pastoral Center organized and in good working order.
  • Oversee the building calendar and manage use, set-up, and clean-up.
  • Serve on University and Ministry committees.
  • Serve on a Diocesan Committee related to Social Justice.
  • Lead a faith sharing group.
  • Participate in Sunday liturgies, weekly staff meetings, Visit Day and Open House Days; provide guidance in pastoral conversations with students and staff; and be a pastoral presence in residence halls and common areas.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications :  3-5 years of experience in ministry at the university level.  Must have expertise in Catholic social teaching and knowledge of organizations which work for justice.  Must have a demonstrated ability to energize and organize students to respond and to design programs to develop students’ Christian faith.  Possess excellent organizational & project management skills.  Must have the ability to effectively work independently and as part of a team.  Must have outstanding oral and written communication skills.  Master’s degree related to pastoral ministry (theology, pastoral studies, religious education, divinity) required.  Grant writing experience desirable.

Steven Zlatic
(815) 836-5289
[email protected]
All are welcome to bring ideas and gifts to this collective work of baptizing, matrimony and anointing, this effort of Kujichagulia, Umoja and Imani.  This is a meeting of the seven sacraments of the  church and the seven principles of Kwanzaa.  This is a meeting of the church. That is what makes it and us truly Catholic.  Stay tuned, stay close, get involved, walk together and don’t you get weary!  There’s a great camp meeting in the Promised Land.  Believe that you are in the camp.
About the Black Catholic Initiative

The Black Catholic Initiative (BCI) has as its focus the 66K African American Catholics served by 351 parishes, 38 of which are predominately African American. The BCI was created to prepare the church for the next generation of African American Catholics, charging them to be fully present and accountable. The goal of the BCI is to come together, and work together in order to give and serve the Church. The BCI is an ethnic ministry that actively participates and offers its work as a gift to the local church of Chicago. Those involved in the BCI will practice Umoja, Kujichagulia and Ujima, (unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility) in order to first give honor to God, and to offer Catholicity with the whole church. The BCI will be one church, not many parishes. In this tried and true tradition, the BCI will plainly and clearly be Catholic.