The Word Among Us

January 2012 Issue

A Pastor for All People

The Prophetic Life and Legacy of Fr. Augustine Tolton

By: Jill A. Boughton

A Pastor for All People: The Prophetic Life and Legacy of Fr. Augustine Tolton by Jill A. Boughton

If Fr. Augustine Tolton had restricted his ministry to other African-Americans, he might have provoked less opposition. But when white people sought him out, a jealous local pastor demanded that he send them back to their home parishes. Puzzled but smiling, Fr. Tolton responded, “Why, Father, we open the doors to the church. We do not tell people to go out, we tell them to go into the church.”

Born into slavery and ordained just twenty-one years after the end of the American Civil War, Augustine Tolton opened doors for others, even...

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