Course Memo

In their pastoral letter against racism, “Open Wide our Hearts,” the USCCB emphasizes how “The generational effects of slavery, segregation, and the systemic use of violence are realities that must be fully recognized and addressed in any process that hopes to combat racism.” [15] In 2016 Jesuits began meeting the Descendants of those whom they held enslaved and sold in the 17th – 19th centuries. The process of reconciliation from this historic sin is ongoing and integral to our work for racial justice. This course is intended to help students deepen their understanding of and response to Catholic & Jesuit slaveholding. How is it that the Catholic Church did not view slaveholding as immoral at this time? Why did Jesuits believe that the enslaved had souls, and yet view them as assets to be bought and sold? How do we reconcile with this sin? Through a new partnership with living Descendants we have been invited to reflect on this history and their hope for truth, racial healing, and transformation as a model for  reconciliation.

January 17 – 20, 2023
9:00 – noon and 1:00 – 4:00