A FRANCISCAN MINISTRY
                                         with African American Families

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December 4, 2001

MEMO TO:                All Black Catholic Leaders and those ministering in the Black Community.

FROM:                       Father Jim Goode, OFM, President, National Black Catholic 
                                   Apostolate for Life

SUBJECT:                KWANZAA FOR LIFE

                                 December 26, 2001 – January 1, 2002

CC:                           Bishop J. Terry Steib, SVD, Episcopal Moderator, 
                                 National Black Catholic Apostolate for Life

                                  Dr. Beverly A. Carroll Executive Director, 
                                  National Conference of Catholic Bishops Secretariat for 
                                  African American Catholics
 

KWANZAA FOR LIFE 

As we gather together, for Kwanzaa 2001

let us share our rich heritage

and the many gifts of harvest.

Let us also remember during these days of Kwanzaa,

 to pray for the sacredness of life.

 

May each value we celebrate during Kwanzaa bring us

closer to God and closer to each other.

 

In his encyclical Evangelium Vitae  - The Gospel of Life,

Pope John Paul II states with urgency:

We need to bring the Gospel of life to the heart of every man

and woman and make it penetrate every part of society”. 

The core of this Gospel, the Holy Father tells us, is

“the proclamation of a living God who is closer to us,

 who calls us to profound communion with himself

and awakens in us the certain hope of eternal life.”

 It is the proclamation that Jesus has a unique relationship

with every person, which enables us to see

in every human face the face of Christ”.

 

God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son.

                                                                         John 3:16

 

Jesus Christ is our life:

Come, let us adore him, alleluia!

 

Kwanzaa for Life

 

Response:

JESUS THE GIVER OF LIFE,

HELP US TO RESPECT AND DEFEND THE SACREDNESS OF ALL HUMAN LIFE.

 

Umoja                          Unity

TO STRIVE FOR AND MAINTAIN UNITY IN THE FAMILY, COMMUNITY, NATION, AND RACE.

Response 

 

Kujichagulia               Self-Determination

TO DEFINE OURSELVES, CREATE FOR OURSELVES, SPEAK FOR OURSELVES INSTEAD OF BEING DEFINED, NAMED, CREATED FOR, AND SPOKEN FOR BY OTHERS.

Response

 

Ujima                   Collective Work and Responsibility

TO BUILD AND MAINTAIN OUR COMMUNITY TOGETHER AND TO MAKE OUR SISTERS’ AND BROTHERS’ PROBLEMS OUR PROBLEMS AND TO SOLVE THEM TOGETHER.

Response

 

Ujamaa                            Cooperative Economics

TO BUILD AND MAINTAIN OUR OWN STORES, SHOPS, AND OTHER BUSINESSES AND TO PROFIT FROM THEM TOGETHER.

Response

Nia                                               Purpose

TO MAKE OUR COLLECTIVE VOCATION THE BUILDING AND DEVELOPING OF OUR COMMUNITY IN ORDER TO RESTORE OUR PEOPLE TO THEIR TRADITIONAL GREATNESS.

Response

Kuumba                                    Creativity

TO DO ALWAYS AS MUCH AS WE CAN, IN THE WAY WE CAN, IN ORDER TO LEAVE OUR COMMUNITY MORE BEAUTIFUL AND BENEFICIAL THAN WE INHERITED IT.

Response

 

Imani                                               Faith

TO BELIEVE WITH ALL OUR HEARTS IN OUR PEOPLE, OUR PARENTS, OUR TEACHERS, OUR LEADERS, AND THE RIGHTEOUSNESS AND VICTORY OF OUR STRUGGGLE.

Response

 

During Kwanzaa for Life  (December 26- January lst)

we will also offer the following prayers:

 

Lord of Life and Goodness, as we celebrate Kwanzaa and the fruits of our

African American heritage, we give you thanks and praise for another day’s journey.

In your divine mercy, grant us the grace to cherish the gift of Life.

 With your guidance may we uphold the dignity and respect for human life

from the moment of conception to its natural end.

We ask all these things in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer.

AMEN.

 

The Lord’s Prayer.

The Marian Prayer: Hail Mary.

 

(Prepared by the National Black Catholic Apostolate for Life.  Copyright   2000)