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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:


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 day.

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 share it!”

“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)



Please pray that Jesus our Bread of Life will always be my story and my song...

Fr. James E. Goode, OFM