November 2, 2021

Amber Roseboom
Director of Media Relations
Catholic Diocese of Arlington

Bishop Michael F. Burbidge to Lead Multicultural Prayer Service Honoring Black Catholics This Friday, during Black Catholic History Month, at the Cathedral of St. Thomas More in Arlington, VA.

Prayer Service is Part of Ongoing Effort in the Diocese of Arlington to Increase Cultural and Racial Unity in Our Communities

ARLINGTON, Va. - On Friday, November 5, 2021, Bishop Michael F. Burbidge, Catholic Diocese of Arlington, is leading a multicultural prayer service to celebrate and honor Black Catholics during Black Catholic History Month (November). The service, “Celebrating the Diversity of the Communion of Saints & Black Catholics on the Pathway to Sainthood,” will begin with prayers offered by Bishop Burbidge and continue with brief historical vignettes on Black Catholic saints and saints-to-be. All are invited to participate.

“As Catholics, we have a sacred duty to work toward unity in all areas of our lives. We must engage in opportunities to heal divisions that exist, be they political, racial or cultural. We must remember that we are one body, united in faith as brothers and sisters in Christ,” said Bishop Burbidge. “During Black Catholic History Month, we join together in prayer as brothers and sisters in Christ. It is my hope that we commit to honor the extraordinary contributions of Black Catholics throughout the year. In learning about the many cultures that make up our diocese, we bring greater unity and cultural richness to our Church. May our Lord help us to grow in harmony and be instruments of his truth and peace within our communities.”

Prayer Service

Celebrating the Diversity of the Communion of Saints & Black Catholics on the Pathway to Sainthood

Friday, November 5, 2021
6 p.m.
*Following the prayer service, all are invited to Burke Hall for a reception. 

The Cathedral of Saint Thomas More
3901 Cathedral Lane
Arlington, Va. 22203

To Watch Live:

There will be an option to livestream the prayer service and to receive prayer cards mailed to your home. For livestream links or any questions please contact the Diocese of Arlington's Office of Multicultural Ministries at

If interested in attending, please contact Amber Roseboom, Director of Media Relations, Catholic Diocese of Arlington, at 571-215-8731 or

Short stories on the lives of saints and saints-to-be include St. Peter Claver, St. Martin de Porres, St. Katharine Drexel, Venerable Pierre Toussaint, Venerable Mother Henriette Delille, Venerable Fr. Augustus Tolton, Servant of God Mother Mary Lange, Servant of God Julia Greeley, and Servant of God Sr. Thea Bowman.

This prayer service is part of a broad effort by the Diocese of Arlington to increase racial and cultural unity across the Diocese following the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' 2018 pastoral letter responding to racism. The diocesan efforts have included listening sessions on racism, a forum on racism entitled “Racism: Understanding, Conversion, and Action," Masses and a variety of prayer services. Moreover, in 2020, Bishop Burbidge announced the formation of the Advisory Council on Racism to offer concrete steps to address racism in the Diocese.

For information on the Catholic Diocese of Arlington, visit

For additional information, contact Amber Roseboom, Director of Media Relations, Catholic Diocese of Arlington, at 571-215-8731 or

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The Catholic Diocese of Arlington was established on August 13, 1974, and is home to 70 parishes and more than 460,000 Catholics. There are currently 276 priests serving in the Diocese and 49 seminarians discerning a priestly vocation. The Diocese has 37 parish (K-8) schools, one virtual school, four diocesan high schools, five independent Catholic schools and three free-standing (not connected with a parish school) pre-schools, serving more than 16,800 students. 

Geographically, the Diocese includes the seven cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Fredericksburg, Manassas, Manassas Park, and Winchester and the 21 counties of Arlington, Clarke, Culpeper, Fairfax, Fauquier, Frederick, King George, Lancaster, Loudoun, Madison, Northumberland, Orange, Page, Prince William, Rappahannock, Richmond, Shenandoah, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Warren and Westmoreland.