[[Image:Raphael_Morgan.jpg|right|frame|Source: ''The Daily Gleaner'' (Kingston, Jamaica). [[July 22]], 1913.]]
Very Rev. '''Raphael Morgan''' (born '''Robert Josias Morgan''', 186x/187x - 19xx) was a Jamaican-American [[priest]] of the [[Ecumenical Patriarchate]], designated as ''"[[Missionary|Priest-Apostolic]]"
'' (Greek: Ιεραποστολος) to America and the West Indies,<ref group="note">According to Fr. Raphael's biography in the ''Who's Who of the Colored Race'', 1915, after he was ordained to the priesthood:<br>:"...at a special service he was duly commissioned Priest-Apostolic from the Ecumenical and Patriarchal Throne of Constantinople to America and the West Indies."<br>(Mather, Frank Lincoln. ''[http://books.google.com/books?id=RFZ2AAAAMAAJ&source=gbs_navlinks_s Who's Who of the Colored Race: A General Biographical Dictionary of Men and Women of African Descent].'' University of Michigan. Gale Research Co., 1915. p.226.)</ref><ref>Robert A. Hill, Marcus Garvey, Universal Negro Improvement Association. ''Letter Denouncing Marcus Garvey.'' In: '''[http://books.google.ca/books?id=CKJrUKdSZwkC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_navlinks_s The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers: 1826-August 1919].''' University of California Press, 1983. pg.197.</ref> later the founder and superior of the ''Order of the Cross of Golgotha'',<ref group="note" name="Order">The ''"Order of...",'' could be a number of things ; it could be 1) an honorarium bestowed upon him for service done in the Church; or 2) an entitling which lets others know of his special mission in the Patriarchate/Diocese etc.; it could also 3) refer to a Society of monastics which transcends, because of rare circumstances, physical location; in addition, it is also possible that this was 4) a monastic brotherhood formed for Black Orthodox Christians, since Morgan was referred to as the ''“founder and superior”'' of that religious fraternity, although the formation of formal monastic orders is not traditionally practiced in the Orthodox tradition. The Orthodox Church does not have separate Orders (Franciscan, Carmelite etc.) each with an entirely independent rule/ethos of life. Despite being mentioned on many occasions in association with Morgan, no other material has ever been found on the ''Order of the Cross of Golgotha''.</ref> and thought to be the first Black Orthodox clergyman in America.
He spoke broken Greek, and therefore served mostly in English. Having recently been discovered, his life has garnered great interest, but much of his life still remains shrouded in mystery.
In 1901-1902 Rev. R. J. Morgan made a visit to his homeland Jamaica. In October 1901 he gave an address to the Jamaica Church Missionary Union, on West Africa and mission work.<ref name="West Africa"/> He also gave a lecture in [[w:Port Maria|Port Maria]], Jamaica in October 1902, entitled ''"Africa - lts people, Tribes, Idolatry, Customs."''<ref>''The Daily Gleaner''. ''[http://www.joyousjam.com/fatherraphael/id10.html Port Maria: A Lecture]''. October 7, 1902. p.29.</ref>
Between 1900 and 1906, Robert moved around much of the Eastern seaboard. From 1902 to 1905 Deacon Morgan served at Richmond, Virginia; in 1905 at Nashville, Tennessee; and by 1906 at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with his address care of the ''Church of the Crucifixion''.<ref name="WHITE"/>
At some point during this period he joined an off-shoot of the Episcopalian Church, known as the ''"American Catholic Church"'' (''ACC''), a sect founded by [[w:Joseph René Vilatte|Joseph René Vilatte]].<ref group="note">The ''"American Catholic Church"'' (ACC) included the jurisdictions and groups which had come out of [[w:Joseph René Vilatte|Joseph René Vilatte's]] Episcopal ministry or were under his oversight. Among them were French and English speaking constituencies, and Polish and Italian ordinariates. The ACC began on August 20, 1894, at a synod held in Cleveland, Ohio, where Polish-speaking parishes joined the jurisdiction of Bishop Vilatte, however the ACC was actually incorporated in July 1915.</ref> He is listed in the records of the Episcopal Church of the USA as late as 1908, when he was suspended from ministry on the allegations of abandoning his post.
===Baptism and Ordination===
On Friday [[August 2]], 1907 the [[Holy Synod]] approved that the [[Baptism]] take place the following Sunday in the ''Church of the Lifegiving Source'' at the Patriarchal Monastery at Valoukli, in Constantinople.<ref group="note">The Patriarchal Monastery at Valoukli is where the cemetery with the graves of the [[List of Patriarchs of Constantinople|Patriarchs]] is found.</ref> Metropolitan [[Joachim (Phoropoulos) of Pelagonia]] was to officiate at the sacrament, and the [[Godparent|sponsor]] was to be Bishop Leontios (Liverios) of Theodoroupolis, Abbott of the Monastery at Valoukli. On Sunday August 4, 1907, Robert was baptised "Raphael" before 3000 people;<ref name="MATHER"/> subsequently he was ordained a [[deacon]] on [[August 12]], 1907 by Metropolitan Joachim; and finally ordained a [[Presbyter|priest]] on the feast of the [[Dormition]] of the [[Theotokos]], [[August 15]], 1907.<ref group="note">In a letter from the Chief Archivist of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, dated [[April 4]], 1973, it was confirmed that the records of the Patriarchate show that Morgan was baptized and renamed "Raphael". (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.467.)</ref> According to the contemporary [[Eastern Catholic Churches|Uniate]] periodical ''L'Echo d' Orient'', which sarcastically described Morgan's Baptism of triple immerson, the Metropolitan conducted the sacraments of Baptism and Ordination in the English language, following which Fr. Raphael chanted the [[Divine Liturgy]] in English.<ref>''Une Conquete du Patriarcat Oecumenique.'' ''' ''Echos d'Orient'' '''. Vol. XI. No.68, 1908, pp.55-56.</ref> Fr. Raphael Morgan's conversion to the Greek Orthodox Church made him the first African American Orthodox priest.
Fr. Raphael was sent back to America with vestments, a [[cross]], and 20 pounds sterling for his traveling expenses. He was allowed to hear [[Confession|confessions]], but denied [[Chrism|Holy Chrism]] and an [[antimension]], presumably to attach his missionary ministry to the Philadelphia church. The minutes of the Holy Synod from [[October 2]], 1907, made it clear in fact that Fr. Raphael was to be under the jurisdiction of Rev. Petrides of Philadelphia, until such time as he had been trained in liturgics and was able to establish a separate Orthodox parish.<ref name="MANOLIS"/>
===Return to America===
Ellis Island records indicate the arrival in New York from Naples, Italy, of the priest, Raffaele Morgan, in December 1907.<ref>Lumsden, Joy. ''[http://jamaicanhistorymonth2007.moonfruit.com/#/father-raphael/4520858082 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 group="note">A.C.V. Cartier was ordained to the Episcopal deaconate by Bishop [[w:Charles Quintard|Charles Quintard]] in 1895, and ordained to the Episcopal priesthood in the same year by Bishop Quintard. (Bragg, Rev. George F. (D.D.). ''Chapter XXXVI: Negro Ordinations from 1866 to the Present''. In: '''[http://www.archive.org/details/historyofafroame00brag History of the Afro-American group of the Episcopal church (1922)].''' Baltimore, Md.: Church Advocate Press, 1922. p.273.)</ref> as a candidate for conversion to Orthodoxy and ordination as a priest. Cartier was rector of the [http://www.aecst.org/home.htm African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas], in Philadelphia, from 1906-12.<ref group="note">[[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.C.V. Cartier (1906-12), the man whom Morgan recommended to the [[Church of Constantinople|Ecumenical Patriarchate]] for Orthodox ordination.</ref> Saint Thomas' served the African American elite of Philadelphia and was one of the most prestigious congregations in African American Christianity, having been started in 1794 by [[w:Absalom Jones|Absalom Jones]], one of the founders, together with [[w:Richard Allen (bishop)|Richard Allen]], of the [[w:w:African Methodist Episcopal Church|African Methodist Episcopal Church]].<ref name=Martin>Tony Martin. ''[http://books.google.ca/books?id=NgIYlUbaoAoC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_navlinks_s#v=onepage&q=&f=false McGuire, George Alexander].'' '''Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance'''. Volume 2. Cary D. Wintz, Paul Finkelman (Eds.). Taylor & Francis, 2004. p.776.</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 name="MANOLIS"/>
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.
In 1911 Fr. Raphael sailed to Cyprus, presumably to be tonsured a [[hieromonk]]. Possibly somewhere around this time, he founded the ''Order of the Cross of Golgotha'' (O.C.G.).<ref group="note" name="Order"/> However, Fr. Oliver Herbel ([[Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America|AOC]]) has suggested that in 1911 Fr. Raphael was [[Tonsure|tonsured]] in Athens.<ref>Fr. Oliver Herbel ([[Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America|AOC]]). ''[http://www.ocanews.org/Herbeljurisdiction4.22.09.html Jurisdictional Disunity and the Russian Mission].'' '''Orthodox Christians for Accountability'''. [[April 22]], 2009.</ref> As is noted above however, the Archives of the Holy Synod of the [[Church of Greece]] contain no information about Fr. Raphael.
===Lecture Tour in Jamaica===
In 1916 Fr. Raphael was still in Philadelphia, having made the Philadelphia Greek parish his base of operations.<ref>Namee, Matthew. ''[http://orthodoxhistory.org/?p=244 The First Black Orthodox Priest in America].'' '''OrthodoxHistory.org''' (The Society for Orthodox Christian History in the Americas). July 15, 2009.</ref> The last documentation of Fr. Raphael comes from a letter to the ''Daily Gleaner'' on [[October 4]], 1916. Representing a group of about a dozen other like-minded Jamaican-Americans, he wrote in to protest the lectures of Black Nationalist Marcus Garvey.<ref group="note">Fr. Raphael signed the letter as ''' ''"Father Raphael, O.C.G., Priest-Apostolic, the Greek-Orthodox Catholic Church."'' ''' Other signatories included: Dr. Uriah Smith, Ernest P. Duncan, Ernest R. Jones, H.S. Boulin, Phillip Hemmings, Joseph Vassal, Henry H. Harper, S.C. Box, Aldred Campbell, Hubert Barclay, John Moore, Victor Monroe, Henry Booth, and many others. The full text of the signed letter is printed in:<br>Robert A. Hill, Marcus Garvey, Universal Negro Improvement Association. ''Letter Denouncing Marcus Garvey.'' In: '''[http://books.google.ca/books?id=CKJrUKdSZwkC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_navlinks_s The Marcus Garvey and Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers: 1826-August 1919].''' University of California Press, 1983. pp.196-197.</ref> Garvey's views on Jamaica, they felt, were damaging to both the reputation of their homeland and its people, enumerating several objections to Garvey's stated preference for the prejudice of the American whites over that of English whites.<ref name=Oliver/> Garvey's response came ten days later, in which he called the letter a conspiratorial fabrication meant to undermine the success and favour he had gained while in Jamaica and in the United States.
Little is known of Fr. Raphael's life after this point, except from some interviews conducted in the 1970s between Greek-American historian Paul G. Manolis and surviving members of the [http://
evangelismos. us/ default.aspx Greek Community of the Annunciation] in Philadelphia, who recalled the black priest who was evidently a part of their community for a period of time. One elderly woman, Grammatike Kritikos Sherwin, remembered that Fr Raphael's daughter left to attend Oxford; another parishioner, Kyriacos Biniaris, recalls that Morgan, whose hand "he kissed many times", spoke broken Greek and served with Fr. Petrides reciting the liturgy mostly in English; whilst another, a George Liacouras, recalled that after serving in Philadelphia for some years, Fr. Raphael left for Jerusalem, never to return.<ref group="note">If there is truth to this statement, one possibility is that Fr. Raphael remained with the monastic [[Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulchre]], of the Greek Orthodox [[Church of Jerusalem]].</ref><ref name="MANOLIS"/>
The [[Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America]] has no record either of Fr. Raphael Morgan, nor of Fr. Demetrios Petrides, as the first records for the Philadelphia community in the archives only began in 1918.
'''Fr. Raphael and George McGuire'''<br>
Namee questions whence the idea came for McGuire to form namely an ''Orthodox'' church. Fr. Raphael Morgan and George McGuire had some striking similarities, including the facts that both:
* served concurrently or consecutively at [http://www.stphilipsrichmond.org/ St Philip's Episcopal Church] in Virginia,<ref group="note">[http://www.stphilipsrichmond.org/ 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 McGuire|George Alexander McQuire]],” who served the parish from April 1898 to November 1900.</ref>
This concurs with Matthew Namee's conclusion above, that it was Fr. Raphael who was George Alexander McGuire's inspiration to form namely an "Orthodox" church. In time the African-based portion of McGuire's ''"African Orthodox Church"'' in Kenya and Uganda, eventually did end up under the canonical jurisdiction of the [[Church of Alexandria|Patriarchate of Alexandria and All Africa]] in 1946. And although those two churches were already upon their own set path towards full canonical Orthodoxy, McGuire was an important part of that process at one stage, and Fr. Raphael Morgan in turn, was behind McGuire's inspiration to form an "Orthodox" church. In this regard, by planting the seed, it can be said that Fr. Raphael was also in some small measure, indirectly or incidentally, a part of that process in Africa as well.<ref group="note">Orthodoxy in East Africa had a rather unique origin as it was not the result of missionary evangelism, nor was it originally inspired by European/White introduction. Orthodox Christianity was unlike all other denominations, appealling to East Africans, such as the [[w:Kikuyu|Kikuyus]], especially because it was never associated with racism, colonialism or religious imperialism. (Metropolitan [[Makarios (Tillyrides) of Kenya]]. ''[http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/church_history/makarios_tillyrides_east_africa.htm The Origin of Orthodoxy in East Africa].'')</ref>
In the end, while Fr. Raphael Morgan's work among Jamaicans in Philadelphia appears to have been transitory, nevertheless he did serve as an important precedent for current African American interest in Orthodoxy, especially that of Father [http://unexpectedjoychurch.org/administration.html Moses Berry], director of the [http://www.oaahm.org/index.html Ozarks African American Heritage Museum], who served as the priest to the [http://unexpectedjoychurch.org/ Theotokos, the “Unexpected Joy,” Orthodox Mission] ([[OCA]]) in Ash Grove, Missouri.<ref name=Oliver/>
* [[George Alexander McGuire]].
* [[Brotherhood of St. Moses the Black]].
evangelismos. us/ default.aspx Evangelismos Greek Orthodox Church], Philadelphia, PA. ''(Fr. Raphael's home parish, ca.~ 1905-1916)''
* [[w:Orthodox Christianity in Uganda|Orthodox Christianity in Uganda]] at Wikipedia.
* Bragg, Rev. George F. (D.D.). ''Chapter XXXVI: Negro Ordinations from 1866 to the Present''. In: '''[http://www.archive.org/details/historyofafroame00brag History of the Afro-American group of the Episcopal church (1922)].''' Baltimore, Md.: Church Advocate Press, 1922.
* Bragg, Rev. George F. (D.D.). ''Afro-American Clergy List. Priests''. In: '''[http://www.archive.org/details/afroamericanchur00bragiala Afro-American Church Work and Workers].''' Baltimore, Md.: Church Advocate Print, 1904.
* ''The Jamaica Times''. ''[http://www.joyousjam.com/fatherraphael/id1.html Only Negro Who is a Greek Priest].'' April 26, 1913.
* ''Une Conquete du Patriarcat Oecumenique.'' ''' ''Echos d'Orient'' '''. Vol. XI. No.68, 1908, pp.55-56.
:(''Publication of the Roman Catholic Uniate Assumptionist Fathers, located in Chalcedon'')
* Herbel, Fr. Oliver ([[Orthodox Church in America|OCA]]). ''[http://www.ocanews.org/Herbeljurisdiction4.22.09.html Jurisdictional Disunity and the Russian Mission].'' '''Orthodox Christians for Accountability'''. [[April 22]], 2009.
* Herbel, Fr. Oliver ([[Orthodox Church in America |OCA]]). “The Relationship of the African Orthodox Church to the Orthodox Churches and Its Importance for Appreciating the Brotherhood of St. Moses the Black,” Black Theology (forthcoming).
* ''[[w:Joseph René Vilatte|Joseph René Vilatte]]'' at Wikipedia.
* Lumsden, Joy, MA (Cantab), PhD (UWI). ''[http://www.joyousjam.com/fatherraphael/index.html Father Raphael].''
* Lumsden, Joy. ''[http://jamaicanhistorymonth2007.moonfruit.com/#/father-raphael/4520858082 Robert Josias Morgan, aka Father Raphael].'' '''Jamaican History Month 2007.''' February 16, 2007.
* Namee, Matthew. ''[http://ancientfaith.com/specials/16th_ancient_christianity_african-american_conference/matthew_namee/ Fr. Raphael Morgan: America's First Black Orthodox Priest.]'' '''16th Annual Ancient Christianity & African-American Conference'''. June 03, 2009.
* Namee, Matthew. ''"[http://orthodoxhistory.org/?cat=58 Robert Josias Morgan visits Russia, 1904]."'' '''OrthodoxHistory.org''' (The Society for Orthodox Chrisitan History in the Americas). September 15, 2009.
* White, Gavin. ''Patriarch McGuire and the Episcopal Church.'' In: Randall K. Burkett and Richard Newman (Eds.). '''Black Apostles: Afro-American Clergy Confront the Twentieth Century.''' G. K. Hall, 1978. pp.151-180.
[[Category:Converts to Orthodox Christianity|Morgan]]