From Slave to Priest: A Biography of the Reverend Augustine Tolton (1854-1897) : First Black American Priest of the United States

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Ignatius Press, 2006 - Religion - 251 pages
Fr. Augustine Tolton (1854-1897) was the first black priest in the United States. Born into a black Catholic slave family, Father Tolton conquered almost insurmountable odds to become a Catholic priest, and at his early death at 43, this pioneer black American priest left behind a shining legacy of holy service to God, the Church and his people. With the thorough scholarly research and inspirational writing by Sister Caroline Hemesath, the great legacy of this first black priest in the U.S., and his courage in the face of incredible prejudice within the Church and society, will be a source of strength and hope for modern Christians who face persecution for their faith, especially black Catholics who still experience similar prejudices. In American history, many black people have achieved, against great odds, success and have made distinct contributions to our society and their fellowman. But Father Tolton faced a different source of prejudice - an opposition from within part of the Church, the one institution he should have been able to rely on for compassion and support. He endured many rebuffs, as a janitor he spent long hours in the church chapel in prayer, and he attended clandestine classes taught by friendly priests and nuns who saw in his eyes the bright spark of the love of God, devotion to the Church and a determination to serve his people. Denied theological training in America, these friends helped him to receive his priestly education and ordination in Rome. He later became the pastor of St. Monica's Church in Chicago and established a center at St. Monica's which was the focal point for the life of black Catholics in Chicago for 30 years. The author interviewed many people who knew Father Tolton personally (including St. Katharine Drexel), and she presents a deeply inspiring portrait of a great American Catholic. Book jacket.
 

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User Review  - ElizaJane - LibraryThing

Reason for Reading: I enjoy reading biographies Religious and I have a particular interest in the Civil War era and escaped slaves. Augustine Tolton escaped slavery with his mother and two siblings ... Read full review

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User Review  - sullijo - LibraryThing

From Slave to Priest: A Biography of the Reverend Augustine Tolton (1854-1897) is the story of Fr. Augustine Tolton, the first black priest in the United States (a number of mixed-race priests ... Read full review

Contents

FOREWORD TO THE 2006 EDITION
9
FOREWORD TO THE 1973 EDITION
13
PREFACE
17
THE WEDDING CELEBRATION
19
IN QUEST OF FREEDOM
25
THE PRICE OF FREEDOM
33
THE SPIRIT BREATHES WHERE IT WILL
43
THE DIVINE INVITATION
53
OFF TO ROME
124
THE SEMINARIAN
131
SAINT JOSEPHS SCHOOL IN QUINCY
141
YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER
147
A MISSIONARY TO AMERICA
159
FATHER TOLTON PASTOR
167
THE BITTER DRAUGHT
178
CHICAGOS FIRST BLACK PARISH
191

WE ARE NOT READY
63
A DARK INTERLUDE
72
FRANCISCAN OVERTURES
83
THE LAY APOSTLE
94
THE LESSON
104
THROUGH THE DARKNESS TO THE LIGHT
113
SAINT MONICAS CHURCH IN CHICAGO
200
HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIENDS
217
THE SHEPHERDLESS FLOCK
225
BIBLIOGRAPHY
239
INDEX
245
Copyright

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