November marks National Black Catholic History Month, a time set aside to reflect on the lives and contributions of African-American Catholics.

The rich history of black men and women who chose to embrace the Catholic faith offers insight and inspiration to all. In this set of articles from our partner Catholic News Service, we present thoughtful and informative overviews of the American black Catholic experience, which include recommended resources for further reading.

In choosing Catholicism, African-Americans returned to ancestral Christian traditions
Over the decades, a diverse array of African-Americans have chosen to become Catholic, for an equally diverse number of reasons. Their rich experiences and shared gifts to the faith gave rise to National Black Catholic History Month.

Black Catholics were at the forefront of the American civil rights movement
A Villanova University professor notes that during the 1950s and 1960s, scores of young black Catholics worked with leaders such as Martin Luther King, Jr. to oppose racism in U.S. society — and in the church, where they desegregated the nation’s all-white seminaries and convents.