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The Canonization of Sister Henriette Delille by the Catholic Church will be discussed at a forum on Sunday, August 11, at 5 p.m., at St. Eugene Church, 9506 Van Ness Avenue in Los Angeles.
Sister Henriette is the founder of the Holy Family Sisters of New Orleans and the Vatican has declared her ‘Venerable on her way to Sainthood.’ She could become the first African American Saint in the Catholic Church.
“Venerable means she lived a life of heroic virtue,” said Sister Eva Regina Martin, Superior General of the Holy Family Sisters. “We presented the Vatican with historical data on Sister Henriette.”
Sister Henriette lived from 1812 to 1862 in New Orleans. She started the Sisters of the Holy Family to evangelize African Americans through education, medical care, and social justice.
According to the Sisters of the Holy Family website, “Henriette was very devout and loved God very much. Because of her love for Jesus and for the sake of the Gospel, she was determined to help those in need.
“Henriette, as she made her way through life, bore many crosses, encountered obstacles, and suffered personal illness. Some of the troubles Henriette Delille faced were the resistance of the ruling population to the idea of a black religious congregation; the lack of finances to more fully serve those in need; the taunts and disbelief of people in her mission; the lack of support from both the Church and civil authority, and poor health.”
Anderson Shaw, director of the African American Catholic Center for Evangelization in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, said, “We all need to support the canonization of Sister Henriette Delille. With our prayers, she can become a Saint in the Catholic Church.”
The Sisters of the Holy Family once staffed Regina Caeli High School, St. Albert, and Our Lady of Victory Schools in Compton.
For information about Sister Henriette and the canonization process, visit sistersoftheholyfamily.com.