Gonzaga Celebrates Black History Month

On Wednesday, February 15 the Gonzaga community came together to celebrate Black History Month with an assembly and full day of programming for students. The theme for the assembly was Black Excellence, and featured a student-produced video, student reflections and poems, a musical performance, and a speech by Fr. Brian Massingale, a professor of Christian Ethics at Fordham University and the author of Racial Justice and the Catholic Church.

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the publication of Dr. Martin Luther King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail," which all junior English classes at Gonzaga study and read. During the assembly, five juniors were invited to read their reflections about the letter, a powerful call to action that still reverberates today. 

During his speech, Fr. Massingale spoke about acknowledging and listening to each person's individual story as a first step towards acceptance of the other and, ultimately, social justice. In addition to several students reading their original poems, Jacques Sangwa '24 played "Lift Every Voice and Sing" on the violin. 

After the assembly, students rotated by class to various presentations throughout campus, including a performance and demonstration by African drumming and dance group Soul in Motion, a talk and performance by alumnus Marc Anthony Thompson '15, a musician and DJ, and a screening of High on the Hog: How African Cuisine Transformed America. A delicious lunch was also provided by a group of Gonzaga Onyx Club moms. We hope you enjoy these photos of a memorable day on Eye Street:

Black History Month Assembly (2023)
Celebrating 200 Years of Jesuit Education in the Nation's Capital