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New organization examines slavery and Church in the US

November 09, 2023

» Continue to this story on National Catholic Reporter

CWN Editor's Note: Catholic Religious Organizations Studying Slavery recently held its inaugural conference.

“If we do not tell our own story, then someone else or some entity will almost certainly provide a biased rendition, which may not be guided by the virtue of truth and faith, as ours hopefully will be,” said Archbishop Shelton Fabre of Louisville. “Accordingly, my dear friends, it is far better that we share our own stories — no matter how painful, no matter how sinful.”

The conference was held in St. Louis, whose first two bishops owned slaves. The Archdiocese of St. Louis “has largely led the way in making documents related to Catholic slavery available to the public,” according to the report.

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  • Posted by: Randal Mandock - Nov. 10, 2023 12:36 AM ET USA

    One would hope the focus of this CROSS group (Catholic Religious Organizations Studying Slavery) begins its "study" with the 1537 papal bull "Sublimis Deus", which forbade the enslavement of all indigenous peoples wherever they may be found. This bull was built upon many previous papal condemnations of slavery, the first of which that I am aware of was the letter "Unum Est" from Pope John VIII to the princes of Sardinia in September 873 (DH 668), wherein he ordered the princes to set slaves free

  • Posted by: feedback - Nov. 09, 2023 8:08 AM ET USA

    How about study of slavery and the Democratic Party, no matter how painful, no matter how sinful?