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MOTHER MARY LANGE LECTURE in Black Catholic Studies

Villanova's annual lecture is named in honor of the chief founder of the Oblate Sisters of Providence, the first permanent congregation of African American women religious in the Catholic Church. The lecture is sponsored by the Office for Mission and Ministry; the Office of the Dean, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; and the Department of History.

Head shot of Bryan Massingale, guest lecturer

In the Spotlight

Maureen H. O’Connell, PhD, a leading voice in theological ethics, justice, and the Catholic Church, will deliver the 2023 Mother Mary Lange Lecture.  An award-winning educator and scholar, Dr. O’Connell is the author of Undoing the Knots:  Five Generations of American Catholic Anti-Blackness (Beacon Press 2021).

2023 Program Details 

Third Annual Mother Mary Lange Lecture 

Thursday, Nov. 2 | 7–8:30 PM | Goldberg Commons (in the Charles Widger School of Law, 299 N. Spring Mill Road) 

Keynote Speaker 

Maureen H. O’Connell, PhD, Professor, Department of Religion and Theology, LaSalle University 


Tia Noelle Pratt, PhD, Assistant Vice President of Mission Engagement and Strategic Initiatives, Office for Mission and Ministry 


The event is free and open to the public. Registration is required.  (Note: registration ends 11/2 at 9 AM.) 


If you have not registered and want to attend the lecture, there may be limited seating available the night of the event. 

Live Stream 

Registration is not needed for those attending via livestream. 

The livestream link is now available.

Directions and Parking 

Directions will take you to free parking available in the parking deck and lots adjacent to the Widger School of Law. 

Villanova University will be taking photographs during this event. If you attend and do not wish to have your likeness made public, you must advise the photographer at the time the picture is being taken. By consenting to have your picture taken and/or by failing to inform the photographer of your intention not to have your likeness made public, you are authorizing Villanova University to publish in any format, and use for any purposes, your name and affiliation and any photographs taken of you at the event. 

Explore More

Resources on Racism

Explore this sampling of church, academic and popular articles on the evil of racism.

Lamentation:A Theo-Ethical Reflection on the Black Exodus

Rev. Bryan N. Massingale, STD, author of Racial Justice and the Catholic Church, delivered the second annual Mother Mary Lange Lecture in November 2022.

Black Saints in the Americas, Past and Present

Erin Rowe, PhD, the author of Black Saints in Early Modern Global Catholicism, delivered the inaugural Mother Mary Lange Lecture in 2021.

Holiness and Prejudice: The Black Catholic Legacy

The Most Rev. Joseph N. Perry, an auxiliary bishop of Chicago, addressed Villanovans as part of Black History Month in February 2020.