Born December 29, 1937, in Yazoo City, Mississippi, Thea was reared as a Protestant until at age nine when she asked her parents if she could become a Catholic.
Gifted with a brilliant mind, beautiful voice and a dynamic personality, Sister Thea shared the message of God’s love through a teaching career. After 16 years of teaching, at the elementary, secondary and university level, the bishop of Jackson, Mississippi, invited her to become the consultant for intercultural awareness.
In her role as consultant Sister Thea, an African American, gave presentations across the country; lively gatherings that combined singing, gospel preaching, prayer and storytelling. Her programs were directed to break down racial and cultural barriers. She encouraged people to communicate with one another so that they could understand other cultures and races.
In 1984, Sr. Thea was diagnosed with breast cancer. She prayed “to live until I die.” Her prayer was answered, and Thea continued her gatherings seated in a wheelchair. In 1989, the U.S. bishops invited her to be a key speaker at their conference on Black Catholics. At the end of the meeting, at Thea’s invitation, the bishops stood and sang “We Shall Overcome” with gusto.
Thea lived a full life. She fought evil, especially prejudice, suspicion, hatred and things that drive people apart. She fought for God and God’s people until her death in 1990.
Taken from the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration here.
|Commonweal Magazine – A Response to Racism w/ Fr. Bryan Massingale, SJ||https://www.commonwealmagazine.org/podcast/response-racism|
|Deacon Ned Berghausen – A Reflection on Kentucky Catholicism and the Sins of Slavery & Racism||http://bit.ly/SrTBSReflectiononKY|
|Will Ousley – Having the Uncomfortable Conversations||http://bit.ly/SrTBSUncomfortableConversations|
|Racial Justice Advent Reflection Book||http://bit.ly/SrTBSAdventReflectionBook|
|KET – Facing an Uncomfortable Truth||https://www.ket.org/program/facing-an-uncomfortable-truth/|
|Archbishop Lori – How church teaching can help explain why ‘Black Lives Matter’||https://www.americamagazine.org/faith/2020/07/27/archbishop-lori-how-church-teaching-can-help-explain-why-black-lives-matter|
|Br. Ken Homan, S.J. – Four Ways for White People to Challenge White Apathy||https://ignatiansolidarity.net/blog/2020/06/01/white-people-challenge-white-apathy/|
|Dr. Aisha White – What is Race? Having the Conversation With Young Children||https://www.pbs.org/parents/thrive/what-is-race-having-the-conversation-with-young-children|
|Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church – The Principle of Solidarity||http://bit.ly/CatholicSolidarity|
- Panel discussion, “Responding to Racism in the Archdiocese of Louisville” on March 7th from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. via Zoom. The panel includes Major Paul Humphrey (Saint Agnes), Jacqui White, (mother of Sacred Heart Academy student), Anice Schervish Chenault (St. William), Mukesha Eduige (Saint Agnes) Monica Hill (St. Augustine, Lebanon) moderated by Debbie Yetter of the Courier Journal. You can view this discussion here.
- Deacon Dunn Cumby from the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City speaking on “The Historical Perspective of Racism in the American Catholic Church” on Sunday, March 21 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. via Zoom. You can register here.
The Record (Archdiocese of Louisville): Reflection on racism takes shape at parish – https://therecordnewspaper.org/reflection-on-racism-takes-shape-at-parish/