The Black Lives Matter Too Committee was formed after the murder of George Floyd in May 2020. We are dedicated to educating others on the history and systems of injustice, raising awareness for the issues affecting the Black community, and gathering in prayer and action so that we can help end the oppression, discrimination, and racism affecting our Black brothers and sisters. We have seen and experienced the sin of racism and the injustices that have affected people of color for far too long, and we demand change.
February 10, 2024 5pm
Our Lady of Angels Cathedral
The African American Catholic Center for Evangelization’s Keeper of the Flame Award is presented in remembrance of the founder of the National Black Catholic Congress Daniel Rudd. Daniel Rudd, one of twelve children, was born August 7, 1854, to Robert and Elizabeth Rudd, who were both although born into slavery, enthusiastic believers in Catholicism.
Rudd’s passion for evangelization was profoundly demonstrated in 1889 when he called together the very first National Black Catholic Congress. This gathering of distinguished Black Catholics from across the country was the beginning of a national Black Catholic evangelization movement, which continues today. In recognition of those who have kept the flame of evangelization burning in the Los Angeles African American Catholic community, we will present a Keeper of the Flame Award to those selected by participating Parishes.
The recipients of this year’s Keeper of the Flame awards will be honored at the 22nd Annual Los Angeles Black History Month Mass Celebration on Saturday, February 10, 2024, at 5pm , at Our Lady of Angels Cathedral. Archbishop of Los Angeles Most Reverend Jose H. Gomez will be the celebrant and homilist.
St. Monica Catholic Community is proud to announce that this year’s recipient of the Keeper of the Flame award for our parish is Dennis Hardwick. As a longtime and committed parish volunteer Dennis has supported all efforts by our JustFaith Ministries and Black Lives Matter Too Committee to recognize the contributions of Black Catholics in our parish and local community. He has walked the George Floyd Memorials and led the team that coordinated the JustFaith Ministries Faith and Racial Justice series attended by over 100 parishioners. He also never misses the AACCFE MLK Breakfast Celebration and is the force that brings together the variety of people who have sat at the St. Monica table over the years. Dennis has also served as a leader in our Thanksgiving Feast, St. Robert’s Center Weekend Food Pantry, and the breakfast ministry at St. Francis Center. Dennis is also a member of PAX Christi and CLUE (Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice) as he is a big believer in spreading our faith’s call to justice to the wider community.
For more on the AFRICAN AMERICAN CATHOLIC CENTER FOR EVANGELIZATION visit www.aaccfe.org
This February, we honor the black community's contributions, struggles, and milestones: activists, civil rights leaders, writers, and more. They inspire our commitment to social justice and raise awareness for the black community's achievements, issues, and history.
The Black Lives Matter Too Committee has curated resources from our local community - we invite you to explore and learn more about the black community here in Santa Monica, regionally, and beyond.
Intro to the gallery of Black Catholics on their way to sainthood.
The Black Lives Matter Too Committee was formed after the murder of George Floyd in May 2020. We have seen and experienced the sin of racism and the injustices that have affected people of color for far too long, and we demand change.
Our goals are three-fold:
In the gospel, Jesus implores us to “love our neighbor as yourself,” He reminds us that we are “all made in God’s image and likeness.” We’re each called to help create a more loving and just world and to embrace our uniqueness. Racism and white supremacy won’t die until everyone sees them as issues they need to solve personally rather than just Black issues they need to sympathize with. This starts with our Catholic community, which is why we have formed this group.
We are dedicated to educating others on the history and systems of injustice, raising awareness for the issues affecting the Black community, and gathering in prayer and action so that we can help end the oppression, discrimination, and racism affecting our Black brothers and sisters.
St. Monica has long partnered with the African American Catholic Center for Evangelization. This organization serves Black Catholics in Los Angeles in collaboration with the Archdiocese and parishes to develop and support evangelization programs, fellowship, and education.
Proud Bird Restaurant
Saturday, January 14, 2023
St. Monica has reserved a table at this year’s 29th Annual MLK Jr. Prayer Breakfast. Hosted by the African American Catholic Center for Evangelization, the Breakfast is an uplifting memorial featuring a keynote speaker, special awards, and inspirational worship and music. St. Monica has long partnered with the African American Catholic Center for Evangelization. This organization serves Black Catholics in Los Angeles in collaboration with the Archdiocese and parishes to develop and support evangelization programs, fellowship, and education. Tickets are $50 each. To reserve a space, please get in touch with Dennis Hardwick at .
A handful of parishioners did participate in this year’s Juneteenth City of Santa Monica Celebration on June 25 at Virginia Avenue Park. Like many festivals, we found a large display of art, crafts, and clothing booths, great food, and fantastic music. Next year, we’ll remember to bring our dancing shoes! The prayer presented by the Santa Monica Area Interfaith Council reminded us why it is important to celebrate this particular day of freedom. Our parishioners have already begun planning how St. Monica can be involved in 2023 and set up our booth distributing information on the Black Catholic American men and women up for sainthood in the Catholic Church, among other contributions of Black Catholics.
Our largest takeaway from the Festival was a reminder to celebrate Juneteenth all year. Here are some examples:
The Archdiocese of Baltimore encourages us to “celebrate this day as a reminder of the transformative power of human liberation.” They promote all “to spend time with our families, reflecting on the meaning of the day by using this as a day of education about our collective history and taking the time to pray for real change.”
We thank those who attended this year’s Anti-Racism Walk and George Floyd Memorial. We especially thank the following for organizing the event and making it all happen:
-Msgr. Lloyd Torgerson
-Black Lives Matter Committee: Brianna Rodrigues, Tola Alade, Delis Alejandro
-Dr. James Spellman, Principal, St. Monica High School
-Symphony W., High School student speaker
-St. Monica High School students
-Dennis Hardwick and St. Monica JustFaith Community
-St. Monica Elementary School Grade 7 Teacher Theresa Rentar and her class produced our signs!
It was a moving and heartfelt ceremony.
Stand with us, pray, and witness our support for peace and ending inequality. We will begin with prayers and reflections in front of the Church, followed by a walk to the St. Monica statue at Wilshire and Ocean Avenue.
Join Archbishop Gomez as we celebrate and honor the life of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on this holiday with Mass. The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels Mass commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King’s Call for Service will be held on Monday, Jan. 17 at 3:00 p.m. - available via livestream - Click Here For More Information.
An annual tradition, this liturgy recognizes our Most recent Ancestors who have made a significant contribution to the community.
St. Odilia Catholic Church was established in 1926 as the Negro National Church of Los Angeles and today is recognized as the Mother Church for all Los Angeles African American Catholics. The first council of the Knights of Peter Claver was established at St. Odilia Catholic Church, leading the way for Councils, Courts, Assemblies, Chapters, and Juniors to be established throughout the Western United States. This led to African American Catholics from Texas, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and many other states settling in South Los Angeles as parishioners of St. Odilia Catholic Church.
The Forum will explore the reasons for the establishment of a Black Catholic History Month and review the lives of African American Catholics who are on the road to Sainthood; the contribution of African American Catholics in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles; the History of the most significant lay African American Catholic organization, the Knights and Ladies of Peter Claver, and their contribution to the History of Black Catholics in Los Angeles. Panelists include Bishop Edward Clark, Auxiliary Bishop Archdiocese of Los Angeles; Fr. Anthony Bozeman, Pastor, Church of the Transfiguration; Michele LeBlanc, Supreme Lady, Knights of Peter Claver Ladies Auxiliary; Moderator is Sherry Haines Pierce, Social Media Strategist.
We are happy to announce that Patrick Saint-Jean, SJ, will be presenting his book The Spiritual Work of Racial Justice on Thursday, Aug. 12, both in-person and via zoom. After the presentation, we welcome our in-person guests for a reception and book signing opportunity.
The book is designed to lead the reader through a month-long Ignatian “retreat,” focusing on racial justice following the format of the Spiritual Exercises. Ignatian spirituality offers us tools for today’s antiracist struggle, devices that are both spiritual and practical. As Patrick Saint-Jean, S.J., explains, the legacy of Ignatius of Loyola is accessible to Jesuits, Catholics, and all followers of Christ. His book inspires our inner journeys while it fuels racial justice in the outer world.
Patrick Saint-Jean, S.J., PsyD, currently teaches in the psychology department at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, where he is also a psychotherapist. He enjoys jazz, traveling, and learning new languages, and he plays the guitar, harmonica, and drums.
Three Catholic Churches are sponsoring Patrick Saint-Jean’s Southern California tour: Padre Serra in Camarillo, Blessed Sacrament Church in Hollywood, and the St. Monica Catholic Community.
The Spiritual Work of Racial Justice: A Month of Meditations with Ignatius of Loyola, Paperback – May 28, 2021
by Patrick Saint-Jean, S.J. (Author)
“Saint-Jean’s book beautifully weaves together several threads: the author’s personal experience as a Jesuit in formation who is both an immigrant and a Black man; poignant reminders of the long history of race-based violence; calls for racial justice; and the perennial wisdom of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola, with their focus on examining our sin so that we are free to love God and neighbor. The result is an invitation to the interior work necessary to deepen our commitment to racial justice.”
-Very Rev. Brian G. Paulson, S.J., Provincial Superior, USA Midwest Province of the Society of Jesus
Tuesday, May 25 | 6:30 p.m. | Meet in Front of the Church
Let us stand, pray and witness together to show our support for peace and to end inequality. Please wear a mask, and we ask that all in attendance adhere to social distancing guidelines.
From the front of the church, we will walk to the Saint Monica statue at Wilshire Blvd. and Ocean Ave.