Thursday, November 7, 2013

National Black Catholic History Month: Lyke Conference

James Patterson Lyke was born in 1939 in Chicago. He was ordained a priest in 1966, and later served as the first black Catholic priest in the state of Tennessee. In 1979, Pope John Paul II called him to serve as auxiliary bishop of Cleveland, Ohio, where he served until 1990. In 1991, he was named the archbishop of Atlanta, according to the Lyke Conference site.

Lyke was one of the leading forces behind Lead Me, Guide Me, the popular African-American Catholic hymnal.

He died of cancer on Dec. 27, 1992, at age 53.

In the spirit of Lyke's life and interests, the foundation named for him works at engaging "the richness and giftedness of the Black community in the vibrant nature of the Catholic Church" to develop "powerful and effective Black Catholic worship."

The foundation has hosted the Archbishop James P. Lyke Conference eight times since 2004, the year it started. The 2014 conference will be June 11 to June 15 at the DoubleTree Hotel in New Orleans.

Read more about Archbishop Lyke and the foundation and conference named after him at the Lyke Conference website.

Follow my National Black Catholic History Month tag for more information about black Catholic notables.

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