St. Charles Lwanga Center


 Mission Statement:

The mission of the St. Charles Lwanga Center is to promote Catholic teaching, Catholic spiritual formation and leadership development, including advocacy for justice and racial equity concerns within the Black Catholic Community and for all who collaborate with them, in accord with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and in the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church.

2017 National Black Catholic Congress XII Pastoral Plan of Action developed by delegates who were appointed by bishops from the dioceses of the United States. Click Here

 

 

(314) 367-7929

 History

The Center is named after Charles (Karoli / Carl) Lwanga, a leader among a group of 22 young men who were martyred between 1885 and 1886. Pope Paul VI canonized St. Charles Lwanga and Companions in 1964.

There was a desire for a house or center of spirituality within the African-American Community and between 1976-1979 the parishioners and staff of the former Most Blessed Sacrament Parish ventured to explore the possibility of using the former convent as a house of spiritual formation and leadership development. The pastor was instrumental in bringing clergy/religious and laity together for formal establishment in 1978. It was important that as many parishes as possible were represented, which led the parishes to agree to sponsor the efforts of the Center.

Currently, there are 9 sponsoring parishes and one non-parish organization. In consultation with Archbishop Robert Carlson, the Board of Directors ratified a revised Constitution and Bylaws in April, 2017, affirming the expanded scope of the Center. As such, the St. Charles Lwanga Center, while retaining its proper name and symbol is also known as the Archdiocesan Office of Black Catholic Ministries. The Board of Directors continues the vision of the reconstituted St. Charles Lwanga Center. The Board consists of representatives from the sponsoring parishes and organization, along with at-large members. 

Programs/Services

Evangelization

Youth and Young Adult Ministry

 

Resources

Among our holdings are books, magazines, back copies of the St. Louis Review, historical, cultural, catechetical and theological references. Looking for something? Contact Margaret Washington at 314.367.7929, ext. 11.

Links

National Black Catholic Congress

St. Louis Review

Staff

Meet the people who keep the Center running.

Sponsoring Parishes and Organization  

LWANGA CENTER SALUTES SR. ANTONA EBO'S EPIC LIFE AND LEGACY

As the St. Charles Lwanga Center approaches its 40th year, we recall Sister Mary Antona Ebo, of the Franciscan Sisters of Mary who transitioned to be with the Lord on November 11, 2017. Sister Ebo was feted at our 16th Annual Testimonial Dinner in March, 1999. Among the noted memorabilia on display in the Lwanga Center is a plaque citing the honor. Her photographic images have been captured through the years as the world came to recognize her as one of the Sisters of Selma in 1965. The Lwanga Center is a custodian of some of those historic moments. Among them is an iconic photograph of her receiving the Eucharist from then Pope John Paul II during the Papal Visit to St. Louis in 1999.

Widely known as a warrior for justice and peace, those of us who encountered her up close cherished her wisdom, humor and love. Her words spoken into the microphones in Selma, “I am here because I am a Negro, a nun, a Catholic, and because I want to bear witness,” resonate through the generations. They are inspiring words from a black Catholic who claimed her charge to bear witness to who God created us to be.

Our walls, halls and atmosphere are vibrant with Sr. Ebo’s spirit along with the multitude of others who have gone on before us. That legacy will continue to thrive through our work affecting St. Louis and beyond.

Sister Ebo with Father George Clements of Chicago at the St. Charles Lwanga Center

  

 We invite you to view an inspirational, contemporary profile entitled, 

 “Remembering a Saint: Karoli Lwanga, Most Influential Martyr”


PRAYER IN HONOR OF THE MARTYRS OF UGANDA

“Gracious God, You have made the blood of the martyrs to be the seed of Christians.  May the witness by Saint Charles Lwanga and his companions of their loyalty to Christ in the face of torture, inspire women and men all over the world to live the Christian faith. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. St. Charles Lwanga and Companions, pray for us.”

 

Latest News

BLESSED JUNE 3 MEMORIAL OF UGANDAN MARTYRS AS LWANGA CENTER IS BLACK CATHOLIC MINISTRIES OFFICE

Blessed June 3 Memorial Day of St. Charles Lwanga and Companions!

Gracious God, You have made the blood of the martyrs to be the seed of Christians. May the witness by Saint Charles Lwanga and his companions of their loyalty to Christ in the face of torture, inspire women and men all over the world to live the Christian faith.  We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.  St. Charles Lwanga and Companions, pray for us.

The St. Charles Lwanga Center is now also known as The Archdiocesan Office of Black Catholic Ministries.  

Following consultation with Archbishop Robert Carlson, the Center's Board of Directors ratified a revised Constitution and Bylaws, affirming the expanded scope of the Center. Revised texts of the mission statement and history are posted on the Lwanga Center's web page. Display of the revised graphic image including the flame with enhanced identification will occur imminently. We enthusiastically invite you to maintain or increase your participation in the Center's mission. Thank you for your continual prayerful support.

LWANGA CENTER RESUMES BIBLE STUDY

Back from a few weeks of hiatus, the St. Charles Lwanga Center Bible Study resumes for 18 consecutive Wednesdays, starting on September 14, 2016. We will be exploring and praying with the 1st and 2nd Books of Kings through early January, 2017. Please bring a Bible. The New American Edition is preferred.There is no fee for the sessions. Free will offerings to the Center are always welcome. Call us at (314) 367-7929 if additional information is needed.

LWANGA CENTER INVITES, UPDATES, AND FR. ART

Join us at the Center as we celebrate National Black Catholic History Month on Sunday, November 16, 2014. At 2:00 p.m. Mrs. Sharon Cooney-Smith of St. Alphonsus "Rock" Parish will lead a discussion on the past and ongoing local history of the National Black Catholic Congress. Refreshments will be provided. RSVP at 314.367.7929.

We will be having our annual one-day retreat for busy people entitled, the Crossroads Retreat on Saturday, December 6, 2014 at the Center from 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. The  $25.00 fee includes materials and meals. RSVP at 314.367.7929.

We are recruiting youth ministry volunteers to assist with planning and implementing our youth programs. Please contact Mrs. Corliss Cox or Fr. Art Cavitt at 314.367.7929

Inquirers have wanted to know about our Executive Director, Rev. Arthur Cavitt and St. Nicholas Parish. On Sunday, November 9, 2014, Fr. Art will be installed as Pastor at the 10:30 a.m. Mass by the Vicar General of the Archdiocese, Msgr. Mark Rivituso. A reception with light refreshments follows after Mass.  All are invited.

 

 

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