Holy Trinity History

Slavery, Segregation, and Race in Our Parish

We invite Holy Trinity parishioners and others to learn more about the role of slavery, segregation, and race in Holy Trinity’s history. We hope that, in throwing more light on our parish’s past, our work will open doors to reflecting on that past and on its implications for our present, and inspire our daily interactions with others. Members of our group include: Peter Albert, Marilyn Butler, Bernard Cook, Brian Flanagan, Peter Higgins, Ashley Klick, Paul Maco, Mary Moran, Suzanne Noonan, Duane Nystrom, and Linda Nystrom.

Initially, we will post our work in the form of articles, vignettes, brief biographies of early parishioners and clergy, and events and episodes in their lives. Over time, our efforts may expand to include audio and video interviews, oral histories, and discussions.

We begin our effort, as the Archdiocese of Washington celebrates National Catholic Black History Month, with a series of short articles on a painful story from our past – the exodus of Holy Trinity's African American members from the parish in 1923, their creation of the parish at Epiphany Roman Catholic Church, and the reconciliation service held for members of the Epiphany and Holy Trinity communities in 1994.

The Founding of Epiphany Roman Catholic Church (1923-25) and Holy Trinity’s Reconciliation Service with Epiphany Parishioners (1994)

Holy Name Society, Holy Trinity Church, Washington, D.C., April, 1922

A 1960 Account of the Founding of Epiphany Roman Catholic Church by Gertrude Turner Waters

First Choir at Epiphany Catholic Church, 1925.
Photographic copy courtesy of Cynthia Jackson for Black Georgetown Remembered, Georgetown University Library. 

 

Epiphany Catholic Church, Dedication of the Church Bell, 1927.
Photographic copy courtesy of Cynthia Jackson for Black Georgetown Remembered, Georgetown University Library. 

A 1994 Account from Holy Trinity News of Holy Trinity’s Reconciliation Service with Epiphany Parishioners

May Procession at Epiphany Catholic Church, about 1945. Included in the procession were the Knights of Saint John in regalia, and the Banner of the Ladies' Sodality.
Photographic copy courtesy of Cynthia Jackson for Black Georgetown Remembered, Georgetown University Library.