Black saints celebration set for Nov. 4 march

By Christine Bordelon

The annual Black Catholic Saints Celebration is scheduled for Nov. 4, beginning at 10 a.m. with a procession around the grounds of St. Mary’s Academy, 6901 Chef Menteur Hwy., New Orleans. Participants are asked to begin lining up by 9 a.m.

This year’s event, “Proudly Celebrating the Past, Faithfully Committed to the Future,” is a nod to the 175th anniversary of the founding of the Sisters of the Holy Family, an African-American women’s religious order in New Orleans.

“The office has chosen to honor the Sisters of the Holy Family this year because they are celebrating 175 years of service to the church,” said Father Daniel Green, archdiocesan director of the Office of Black Catholic Ministries, which coordinates the event. “The work they have given to the church universal but, in particular to the church of New Orleans, is invaluable. They have cared for our elderly and orphans, taught the youth and advocated for the disadvantaged. They have also supported the Archbishop of New Orleans and the work of Notre Dame Seminary. It is only fitting that we pause for a moment to acknowledge, thank and support them in this way.”
Alecia Bloodworth, assistant director of the Office of Black Catholic Ministries, said posters and banners of past superiors of the Sisters of the Holy Family will be carried in the procession starting at St. Mary’s Academy and ending at the motherhouse.

The parade route will continue on Chantilly Drive, take a left on Chef Menteur Highway, a left on Wilson Drive, another left on Dwyer Road, then turn left onto America Street and left onto Chef Menteur Highway and will end at the motherhouse, 6905 Chef Menteur Hwy., New Orleans. The program will be held in the chapel.

Participants in the parade will include the St. Mary’s Academy band, the Knights of Peter Claver 3rd and 4th order and the Sophie B. Wright Marching Band.

The program will include speaker Deacon Jesse Watley of Blessed Seelos Parish and the presentation of the second annual community service award called the Sophie Aramburo Servant Leader award. Bloodworth said 19 people will receive this year’s award.

For details, call the Office of Black Catholic Ministries at 861-6207.

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