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Loyola alumnus named director of Black Catholic Ministry in New Orleans

Loyola press release - July 22, 2013

Loyola University New Orleans alumnus Ansel Augustine embarked this month on a new chapter of his life’s work in ministry as director of the Archdiocese of New Orleans Office of Black Catholic Ministry. Augustine received his Loyola undergraduate degree in 2000 and his Master of Pastoral Studies in 2002 from the Loyola Institute for Ministry.

“What a good choice for director of Black Catholic Ministry in New Orleans,” said Tom Ryan, Ph.D., director of the Loyola Institute for Ministry. “Ansel is a leader. He's wise, insightful, has national connections and a great sense of humor. New Orleans is lucky to have him.”

Augustine will lead the office in its mission to serve as a bridge between the resources of the Archdiocese and the gifts of the Black Catholic community of New Orleans. One of the largest programs for the Black Catholic Ministry is its Annual Gospel Fest, which will take place Sept. 14.

The call to ministry came to Augustine while a student at Loyola. “Loyola was, and continues to be, a place where my ministry is nurtured,” Augustine said. “My ministry was forever changed when Loyola University Ministry challenged me to go back to my old neighborhood—the Sixth Ward/Treme—and serve my home parish, St. Peter Claver. It was there that youth ministry became my passion.”

He began helping with the youth group at St. Peter Claver, and after he graduated with his master’s degree, a job was waiting for him there.

“I had so many people praying and believing in me. That’s the blessing of Loyola,” Augustine said. “Everyone from the people that maintain the campus and serve in the cafeteria all the way up to the president’s office had a hand in my ‘holistic’ Loyola education. I know that I wouldn’t be the man that I am if it hadn’t been for the love and support of these Loyola faculty and staff.”

Previously he served as the associate director of the Archdiocese of New Orleans CYO Youth and Young Adult Ministry Office. He also served on the board for the National Young Adult Ministry Association and presently serves on the board for the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry. In November, Augustine will give a keynote speech at the National Catholic Youth Conference in Indianapolis Nov. 20-23.

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