A FRANCISCAN MINISTRY WITH AFRICAN AMERICAN FAMILIES
Reverend Fr. James E. Goode, OFM, Ph.D. African American Catholic Evangelist
Father James E. Goode, OFM, Ph.D. is the Pastoral Director of Solid Ground Franciscan
Ministry, an evangelization ministry with African American Families. He is the founder
and president of the National Black Catholic Apostolate for Life. He is the leading
Black Catholic Evangelist in the United States. He is known as the “Dean of Black
Catholic preachers”, having preached the first Black Catholic Revival in America
(1974). He has preached the gospel message of “Blessed Assurance” and the dignity
of all human life throughout the world. In 1989, he inaugurated the National Day
of Prayer for the African American Family, which is celebrated on the first Sunday
of Black History Month. Father James Goode, is known and respected as an “Icon in
the Black Catholic community” of the United States.
Franciscan Father Jim Goode is a proud member of the Franciscan Family of Franciscan
Friars- Province of the Immaculate Conception. He is a native of Roanoke, Virginia
and when ordained in May 1972 at the Shrine Church of St. Anthony in New York City,
he became the first Black Catholic priest from the City of Roanoke. He holds a B.A.
degree in Philosophy from the Immaculate Conception Seminary, University of the State
of New York, a Master of Divinity &, Master of Theology degree from St. Anthony’s
Theological Seminary, University of the State of New York, a Master of Arts degree
in Psychology, from the College of St. Rose, a Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology
from Union Graduate School and a Doctor of Humane Letters (honorary) Virginia Theological
Seminary. He has completed postgraduate studies from New York University School of
Education, Georgetown University and the University of Louvain. He was a Research
Fellow at Yale Divinity School.
God has used Franciscan Fr. Jim Goode’s vocation in many grace filled ways to inspire
and improve the lives of thousands. To list just a few:
Instructor, Serra High School- McKeesport, Pennsylvania
Black Catholic Ministries- Diocese of Pittsburgh
Founding Pastor & first Black pastor of Our Lady of Charity Faith Community of Blacks
Catholics – Diocese of Brooklyn
Established the first Black Catholic Lay Leadership Development Program – Ministers
of Service in the Diocese of Brooklyn at Charity.
Commissioned three historical Black Catholic Murals to be placed in the Church of
Our Lady of Charity: 1.) The Map of Africa, the slave ships and the Black Family-artist
James Maxwell, 2.) The Black Madonna surrounded by Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm
X, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman and Fr. Andy Jackson, O.C.S.O. – artist Tucker
Wallace. 3.) The Resurrected Black Christ with the Bridges of Africa and Brooklyn
– artist Father Fernando Arizti, SJ
First President –Office of Black Catholics – Diocese of Brooklyn
Elected Member of the New York City School Board District #16 (two terms)
Led a Black Catholic Prayer March in front of the White House for Jobs for the unemployed.
Instructor- Immaculate Conception Seminary, Huntington, Long Island
Associate Professor- Medgar Evers College – Brooklyn, New York
Preacher Black American Voices in Rome- sponsored by the City of Rome, Italy and
the Vatican Congregation for Evangelization.
First African American Catholic Pastor – Archdiocese of San Francisco – St. Paul
of the Shipwreck Catholic Church
Commissioned the St. Paul of the Shipwreck Painting of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,
on the occasion of the first Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. National Holiday -artist-
Fr. Rey V. Culaba, CSsR, Co- Pastor.
Coordinator- Black Catholic Affairs – Archdiocese of San Francisco.
In collaboration with Fr. Rey Culaba, CSsR, the Co- Pastor at St. Paul of the Shipwreck
- commissioned the “Resurrected Jesus of Planks and Pieces” 1989– artist Joseph Sharlow,
Chaired the first City of San Francisco Drug Abuse Conference
President San Francisco Housing Authority Commission
Commissioner – San Francisco Commission for Youth & Children & Families.
Member of the Official White House Delegation to welcome President Nelson Mandela
of South Africa to the United States at a White House Ceremony
Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity – Life Member
Chaplain Alpha Gamma Lambda Chapter –Life Member
Chairman, African American Voices for Justice and Peace
National Black Catholic Congress Board
Guardian, St. Clare Friary, New York City
Chaplain, Knight of Peter Claver Ladies Auxiliary Court #229
Chaplain, Knight of Peter Claver Fr. James E. Goode Court #229
Preacher at the U.N. Isaiah Wall for the “Liberation of the People of Sudan”
Created the St. Charles Lwanga & Companions New York’s Young Black Achievers Evening
Prayer and Award Ceremony
Member of the Provincial Council Province of the Immaculate Conception
Spiritual Consultant-Franciscan Handmaids of Mary
Commissioner- Office of Black Ministry- Archdiocese of New York
Spiritual Assistant & Founder Mother of God Franciscan Fraternity
President, National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus (two terms).
Board of Consultants United States Bishops Conference- Secretariat for African American
Spiritual Moderator- Friends of Mother Henriette Delille- N.Y. Chapter
June is Abortion and All Acts of Violence Awareness Month in the African American
Provincial Secretary for Missions and Evangelization – Immaculate Conception Province
Established the Shrine of Saint Josephine Bakhita, October 1, 2000, the year of her
canonization by His Holiness Pope John Paul II
Coordinates a food, clothing, and spiritual direction weekly Mission from St. Clare
Friary – Solid Ground Franciscan Ministry to the homeless and needy.
Preached and conducted over 300 Black Catholic Revivals – Convocations.
The awards and citations conferred upon Father Goode are too numerous to mention,
but they include, two Congressional Record Citations, Commendations from the Diocese
of Pittsburgh, Diocese of Brooklyn, Archdiocese of San Francisco, Archdiocese of
Detroit, Archdiocese of Chicago, Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Archdiocese of New York,
Proclamations from the City of New York, the City of San Francisco, Keys to the City
of Roanoke, Virginia,
Honored at the “Messiah 2000” Concert – Lincoln Center-New York City thus becoming
the first Roman Catholic priest to be honored at Lincoln Center. The recipient of
the NBCCC Brother Joseph A. Davis Life Time Achievement Award presented by the National
Black Catholic Clergy Caucus 1995 Detroit, Michigan and 2004 Houston, Texas. At the
Knights of Peter Claver Convention 2006 he received the Gold Medal of Merit for his
commitment to Pro-Life Mission in the African American community. In 2009 he received
the Venerable Pierre Toussaint Gold Medallion from the Archbishop of New York and
the Office of Black Catholic Ministry. In 2011 The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Award
Our Lady of Lourdes – Archdiocese of New York.
Above all of his degrees, positions, and honors Jim Goode is determined to walk in
the footsteps of Jesus and Francis, by feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless,
educating the young and old, caring for the sick and those living with HIV-AIDS,
restoring hope to the victims of violence and abuse, mending together those who are
broken, and standing up boldly for the sacredness of all human life and dignity every
If anybody knows Father Jim Goode, you know that he enjoys the gift of laughter.
He loves to laugh and tell stories. He gets the greatest kick out of watching people
laugh and feel really special about themselves. This goes all the way back to his
childhood in Virginia. He also loves to give and give unconditionally. As someone
has stated, “He is a man with a big heart and a big soul and he ain’t ashamed to
“This is my story; this is my song, praising my Savior all the day long.”
(This Profile of Father James E. Goode, OFM, Ph.D cannot be edited without the expressed
permission of SOLID GROUND MINISTRY) BioInfoRequest
Please pray that Jesus our Bread of Life will always be my story and my song...