Christian Real Estate Professionals : Fran's Friday Forum...BLACK AND CATHOLIC Are Beautiful...!!!

Fran's Friday Forum...BLACK AND CATHOLIC Are Beautiful...!!!

February is Black History Month...!!!

I’m trying to figure out why, in a Country where 24% of the population claims to be Catholic, only 3% of African Americans worship as Catholics...!!!

While I grew up in a typical second generation Italian American neighborhood, and I’m sorry to say I DID hear the ‘N’ word used from time to time, it always amazed me that there were so few blacks in our Church...!!!

'BLACK' sounds racist; I prefer 'AFRICAN AMERICAN'Why was I amazed...???

From first grade on we were taught that discrimination against anyone of another race, creed, or ethnic background was sinful...The good sisters of the IHM made it perfectly clear...clear enough, in fact, that that ‘good news’ trumped any vestiges of discrimination left from the generation of our parents or grandparents...!!! was difficult to shed some of the prejudices and stereotypes that surrounded us and the society of those days...For me, meeting, befriending, and appreciating on a one on one basis several black friends was my own personal ticket out of prejudice and into Christian brotherhood...!!!

Fast forwarding to the present day, my faith and my upbringing have conditioned me to accept people as they come...e.g. there are some Catholics, Italian Americans, Republicans, Democrats, Secular Feminists, Egotistical intellectuals, and others who I have come to Faith, which I try to keep at the center of my life and family, insists that I LOVE EVEN THOSE...

My favorite picture of Sister of my heroes has become SISTER THEA BOWMAN...Sister Thea has only recently become known to me, although she died in 1990...!!! A resident of Mississippi and a convert to Catholicism, Sister Thea broke many racial barriers in the Catholic Church in America. Proud of her African American heritage, the slavery of her ancestors, and the fight for equality for all her black ‘brethren’, Sister Thea became a Franciscan Nun, and through her singing, linguistical background, and educational ministries won many followers and admirers, both during her lifetime and even now...

A paraphrase of Sister Thea’s to a gathering Of The US Conference Of Catholic Bishops in 1989, just a year before she succumbed to cancer...’If you go into a room and you see a particular group not represented there, go out and invite them in’...In that short paraphrase Sister Thea underscored the Catholic Church’s claim to be ‘UNIVERSAL’ and ‘COLORBLIND’, and urged The Catholic Bishops to be sensitive to the various CULTURAL GIFTS that are often ignored by our Church and which gifts could greatly enhance our Worship To God...!!!

Sister Thea ‘FORCED’ Mike Wallace of 60 Minutes to admit that ‘BLACK IS BEAUTIFUL’

I write this post, not only to commemorate the memory of Sister Thea Bowman, but as an open invitation to those of African American heritage to come and Worship with us...We need your cultural diversity, your ardent enthusiasm, and your persevering Spirit...You may find that being ‘CATHOLIC IS BEAUTIFUL’...

I have entered a room in which I noticed there were many of you missing...WELCOME HOME...!!!




Comment balloon 6 commentsFran Gaspari • February 17 2012 06:29AM


I'm glad to read that a Chicago teacher is suing his school district for his suspension for using the n-word.

Having just watched a show on the Greensboro 4 who integrated the Woolworth's lunch counter in the 1960s, we have come so FAR because we keep making progress * removing words, ideas and our progress from the discussion is a DISservice to us all.....

I can remember when electing JFK was UNthinkable because he was Catholic....and now we have had a Catholic president, a divorced president and a black president.

Posted by Wallace S. Gibson, CPM, LandlordWhisperer (Gibson Management Group, Ltd.) over 8 years ago


A cultured society removes such words from their vocabulary, not their dictionary...!!!

Thanks,   Fran

Posted by Fran Gaspari, "The Title Man" - Title Insurance - PA & NJ (Patriot Land Transfer, Inc.) over 8 years ago

Fran, although I am not Catholic I met a black Catholic bishop in Jackson,Tennessee a couple of months ago. I was very impressed!

Growing up I had a black nanny whom has since gone on to be with the Lord. She was my hero!

Posted by Mike Frazier, Northwest Tennessee Realtor (Carousel Realty of Dyer County) over 8 years ago


We rarely hear stories such as yours which, I think, are more numerous than most realize...instead, the media would rather dwell on stories that involve racist attempts to divide us. If you watched the entire video, you heard Sister Thea warn about efforts to divide the church and its members...!!!

Even The Catholic Church refers to other Christians as 'separated brethren' so as not to play into divisional ploys...!!! All Christians should, by definition, have Jesus at the center of their lives and families, and Jesus the ultimate focus of their worship...!!!

Thanks,   Fran


Posted by Fran Gaspari, "The Title Man" - Title Insurance - PA & NJ (Patriot Land Transfer, Inc.) over 8 years ago

Your post is especially interesting because in the deep South only the Catholic church was always integrated. I am not sure why there are not more African American Catholics.

Posted by Charlie Ragonesi, Homes - Big Canoe, Jasper, North Georgia Pros ( over 8 years ago


I am embarrassed to admit that a study of African American history will reveal that even some Catholic Churches in the South were guilty of some forms of segregation...!!! Sister Thea witnessed such segregation, but it didn't deter her from converting to Catholicism and ultimately pursuing a vocation to the consecrated life as a Franciscan nun in the Catholic Church...!!!

Thanks,   Fran

Posted by Fran Gaspari, "The Title Man" - Title Insurance - PA & NJ (Patriot Land Transfer, Inc.) over 8 years ago