MISSION & GOAL

The Program is a local parish initiative established for the benefit of all people. Our mission is to usher in an era of renewed vitality, infusing African American Catholic parishes with Tolton spirituality and equipping lay leaders to sustain a movement for a more mission-focused and community-orientated Church.

Our goal is to assemble a cohort of learning congregations, supporters, and community partners to explore possibilities for understanding and applying the fundamental principles of Tolton Spirituality holistically and cohesively, in order to build intentional connections among multiple areas of congregational life and collaborative relationships among parishes with the potential to be united under a common identity.

By forming parish-based leadership teams supported by the community partners, the Tolton Spirituality Center will strengthen existing efforts and develop new programs and ministries to animate the tangible gifts, spiritual graces, and prophetic witness of Father Tolton. Working as a model, this collaborative learning journey will provide the educational and practical resources to help black Catholic parishes on the South Side of Chicago and across the nation become thriving congregations.

 

When one congregation in the Church thrives, because we are one Church, we all thrive.


Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Matthew 28:19

“I have come to set the world on fire, and how I wish it were already so! 

Luke 12:49
 

 

DEFINING A THRIVING CONGREGATION

Inspired by the life and legacy of the Venerable Augustus Tolton, we have identified the following characteristics of thriving congregations that would inspire renewal and transformation in those Catholic parishes with a strong African-American presence. It is these principles we hope to explore with and animate within our local Church through the Thriving Congregations learning community:
 
The average congregant needs to trust in the new understandings of ancient sacred traditions, beliefs, values, and relationships that must be forged in today’s world. God is ever ancient, yet ever new.
 
Tolton’s life is an example of how to live a life of holiness and wholeness despite setbacks, both personal and institutional. Thriving congregations have the ability, through the power of community, to triumph over tragedy, embracing both the joys and sorrows of life in a spirit of suffering service.
 

  • Thriving congregations bring others to Christ through strong evangelization efforts. This commitment to community is exhibited by a willingness to collaborate with organizations beyond the parish walls and efforts to put faith in action through the corporal works of mercy and outreach to those on the margins

  • Thriving congregations promote a sense of responsibility and ownership of the parish and community at large, which includes passing on the faith to the next generation. 

  • Thriving congregations engage in courageous conversations. They are willing to take risks to stand for what is right, to speak prophetically, and to call out injustice when it is manifest.

  • Thriving congregations rely on radical hospitality to grow the church. They operate with the philosophy that they may not have much but what they do have, they are going to share.

  • Thriving congregations are mission-driven. They repair broken relationships, renew good relationships so they can be great, and replant regularly to grow new relationships.

 

LEADERSHIP

Episcopal Moderator

Executive Director

Chairperson

Associate Director, Pro Tem

Program Manager

Admin Support

Acting Secretary

Treasurer

Board Member​

Board Member

Board Member

Board Member

Fiscal Agent

Most Rev. Joseph Perry

Rev. Canon, A. Gerard Jordon

Miss Angela Hicks

Valerie Jennings

Shakira Morrissette

Jospehine Marion

Lena Young

Paula Jones

Deacon James Norman

Christine Riley

Ladell Johnson

Kathleen Humphries-Grannum

Fr. Michael Trail

Vacant Seat

Vacant Seat

Vacant Seat

Vacant Seat

Vacant Seat

Vacant Seat

Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago

Archdiocese of Chicago

St. Benedict the African

Archdiocese of Chicago

Archdiocese of Chicago

Archdiocese of Chicago

Our Lady of Africa

St. Thomas the Apostle

Archdiocese of Chicago

St. Martin de Porres

Our Lady of Africa

Our Lady of Africa

St. Thomas the Apostle

St. James (at Wabash)

St. Katherine Drexel

St. Josephine Bakhita

St. Moses the Black

Holy Name of Mary

St. Margaret of Scotland

Vicariate VI

Staff

Board of Directors

Staff

Staff

Staff

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Grantor

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Board of Directors

 

Upcoming Virtual Workshops & Courses

UPCOMING VIRTUAL COURSES & WEBINARS

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Young Adult & Teenage Discipleship and Engagement (Two-month course)

Jake Mulder, M.Div., senior director of strategy, Fuller Youth Institute

Start Date: May 12 End Date: June 30

Every Thursday, 9:00 AM-10:30 AM CST

➢Sticky Faith Leaders: Building Lifelong Faith

Sticky Faith gives ministry leaders a research-based theological framework they can offer parents and families and a host of practical relationships and programming ideas that develop long-term faith in teenagers. It's never too early or too late to start developing a faith that continues to grow and lasts. 50% of students walk away from the church after graduating high school. 

 

➢Growing Young: Seeing and Unleashing The Passion Of Young People In Churches

Churches are losing both members and vitality as increasing numbers of young people disengage. Based on the Fuller Youth Institute's groundbreaking Growing Young research with over 250 of the United States' leading congregations, this workshop will offer a strategy that parishes can use to better notice, involve, and retain teenagers and young adults overall congregational vitality. 

 

The workshop will profile innovative churches that are engaging 15-to 29-year-olds and, as a result, are growing in their mission spiritually, emotionally, and numerically. Pastors and church leaders will learn how to position their church to engage younger generations in a way that breathes life and energy into the whole church. 

 

Please click the link below to enroll in this course.

https://forms.gle/Bw6K9VSfw8Xthyk49

 

Mental Health in Your Congregation (Webinar for Mental Health Awareness Month)

Dr. Brandy S. Peoples, Rose Jackson-Beavers, and Tamela Wright

Saturday, May 14, 12:00 PM- 1:30 PM CST

There are many tools available to help leaders and teams be equipped to be "first responders" and provide help for those suffering from mental health issues. This workshop will introduce you to some of these tools, including reducing mental health stigma, gaining insight into mental illness signs and symptoms, and raising the concepts and skills to help you be "trauma-informed."

 

The workshop will teach you how to help adults and youth who are developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. In addition, it includes identifying, understanding, and responding to signs and symptoms. We will discuss why we must change the stigma on mental health and how congregations can help by becoming behavioral health knowledgeable.

 

Please click the link below to register for this FREE event.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/mental-health-and-your-congregation-tickets-311260738247?fbclid=IwAR315W7F7bdurVV3mmk7Bw9IeBRtwCZWPDR8PxtBCwBHniC263yincqeiqU

 

Embodied Practices for Trauma Resilience (Two-month course)

Jessica Young Brown, Ph.D., licensed clinical psychologist

Start Date: July 7 End Date: Aug 25

Every Thursday- 12:00 PM- 1:30 PM CST

Embodied Practices for Trauma Resilience is a workshop that will focus on understanding the impact of personal and global trauma on the body of Christ, our relationships, and our spiritual practices. The focus will be on navigating relationships and meeting the needs of traumatized parishioners. Each week, we will provide students with experiential strategies for managing personal and communal trauma. Furthermore, the workshop will engage in embodied practices that help reconnect to a sense of safety in the midst of a troubling world and build skills for extending this safety into the communities the church is called to serve. 

 

Please click the link below to enroll in this course.

https://forms.gle/Bw6K9VSfw8Xthyk49

 

Inspiring Generosity in Your Congregation (One-month course)

Rosario & Callie Picardo- Founder of Deep Roots Financial

Start Date: Oct 6 End Date: Oct 27

Every Thursday- 10:00 AM- 11:30 AM CST

Beyond meeting the budget, how do you lead a movement of generosity impacting your congregation for the transformation of the world? Join Callie and Rosario Picardo, co-authors of Money Talks: A Biblical Take on Earning, Saving, Spending, and Giving. This workshop will provide practical tools and real-life examples to help individuals and congregations implement God's word about money for a life-transforming impact.

 

Please click the link below to enroll in this course.

https://forms.gle/Bw6K9VSfw8Xthyk49

 

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact the program manager, Shakira Morrissette, at smorrissette@archchicago.org.