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Raphael Morgan

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Ellis Island records indicate the arrival in New York from Naples, Italy, of the priest, Raffaele Morgan, in December 1907.<ref>Lumsden, Joy. ''[ Robert Josias Morgan, aka Father Raphael].'' '''Jamaican History Month 2007.''' February 16, 2007.</ref> Once home, Fr. Raphael baptized his wife and children in the Orthodox Church. This is noted in the minutes of the Holy Synod of [[February 9]], 1908, which acknowledges receipt of a communication from Fr. Raphael.
The last mention of Fr. Raphael in Patriarchal records is in the minutes of the Holy Synod of [[November 4]], 1908, which cite a letter from Fr. Raphael recommending an Anglican priest of Philadelphia, named "A.C.V. Cartier",<ref>A.C.V. Cartier is listed on a list of Afro-American Priests as follows: ''"1895: Rev. A.C.V. Cartier, Denver Col."'' (Bragg, Rev. George F. (D.D.). ''Afro-American Clergy List. Priests''. In: '''[ Afro-American Church Work and Workers].''' Baltimore, Md.: Church Advocate Print, 1904. p.32.)</ref> as a candidate for conversion to Orthodoxy and ordination as a priest. Cartier was rector of the [ African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas], in Philadelphia, from 1906-12. <ref>[ George Alexander McGuire] was rector of The African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas in Philadelphia from 1902-05. He was succeeded as rector by A.V.C. Cartier (1906-12), the man whom Morgan recommended for Orthodox ordination.</ref> According to the letter, Cartier desired as an Orthodox priest to undertake missionary work among his fellow blacks. Due to the fact that the jurisdiction over the Greek Church of the [[diaspora]] had been ceded by the Ecumenical Patriarchate to the [[Church of Greece]] in 1908, the request was forwarded there. However according to Greek-American historian Paul G. Manolis, a search of the Archives of the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece did not turn up any correspondence with Fr. Raphael. His letter about A.C.V. Cartier is the only indication we have from Church records of his missionary efforts among his people.<ref>Manolis, Paul G. ''Raphael (Robert) Morgan: The First Black Orthodox Priest in America''. '''Theologia: Epistēmonikon Periodikon Ekdidomenon Kata Trimēnian'''. (En Athenais: Vraveion Akadēmias Athēnōn), 1981, vol.52, no.3, pp.470-71.</ref>
In 1909, his wife filed for divorce, on the alleged charges of cruelty and failure to support their children. She left with their son Cyril to Delaware County, where she remarried.
George McGuire soon spread his African Orthodox Church throughout the United States, and soon even made a presence on the African continent in such countries as [[Archdiocese of Kampala and All Uganda|Uganda]], [[Archdiocese of Kenya|Kenya]], and [[Archdiocese of Irinopolis|Tanzania]]. However, around the time of the Second World War, the African churches were cut off from the American and in the post-war period had drifted far enough way to request and come under the [[omophorion]] of the [[Church of Alexandria]].
Namee questions whence the idea came for McGuire to form namely an ''Orthodox'' church. Fr. Raphael Morgan and George McGuire have a few similarities: both were Black Caribbeans, served concurrently or consecutively at [ St Philip's Episcopal Church] in Virginia, <ref>St. Philip’s Episcopal Church of Richmond, Virginia lists Morgan as having been the rector of their parish for a short time in 1901. He is listed as the rector from “1901-April 1901.” Morgan’s predecessor at St. Philip’s was a certain “Reverend George Alexander McQuire,” who served the parish from April 1898 to November 1900.</ref> were ordained around the same time, and later served in Philadelphia. Namee concludes that with so many coincidences, it is impossible for these two men to not have known one another; and therefore it must be from some influence - either in conversation or evangelism, that McGuire came to know the Orthodox Church.
However, one deterrent from this theory comes in the familiarity he had with the Orthodox Church by McGuire's ''consecrator'', Joseph René Vilatte. At various points, Vilatte come into contact with both the [[Russian_Orthodox_Church|Russian]] and [[Syriac_Orthodox_Church|Syriac]] Orthodox Churches in a move for Catholic-Orthodox reconciliation, having even been accepted for a while by Bishop [[Vladimir (Sokolovsky-Avtonomov) of the Aleutians|Vladimir]] of [[Alaska]] in May of 1891.

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