Part of the challenge – and joy – of writing on race relations is not knowing or having it figured out ahead of time. To embrace the vulnerability and risk of love. Of course this is true of LIFE itself, to the extent we wish to live with our eyes open. As Merton once noted in 1967, in writing about Malcolm X: “I realize I don’t fully know what I am talking about . . . but protest is a biological necessity.”
The new issue of America magazine is dedicated entirely to the topic of race and all things “Black and Catholic.” The issue includes my article on Sr. Thea Bowman but much, much more, e.g. a lead article by M. Shawn Copeland and some very good book reviews. The essays by Cora Marie Billings and Vanessa and Lynn Fulmore are priceless. “I am Vanessa Fulmore. I am a confident young woman. I am blessed to be black and, yes, I am proud to be Catholic.”
Like turning a diamond this way, now that, the issue unveils in flashes of light and not a little darkness the manifold beautiful but too often hidden narratives of “being Catholic.” A wondrous read that moved to me at times to tears.
You can check out the whole issue here.