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Activist Pastor to Deliver Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Keynote

February 5, 2021

Rev. Myra Brown, a pastor at Spiritus Christi, an independent Catholic Church based in downtown Rochester, will deliver the keynote address for St. John Fisher College’s Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration.

Rev. Myra Brown

Her lecture, hosted by the Office of Multicultural Affairs, will begin at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 11, via Zoom (Meeting ID: 

In 2017, Brown became one of only three African-American woman in the United States to be ordained as a Catholic priest. At Spiritus Christi, she leads the Spiritus Anti-Racism Coalition, galvanizing her parish community to address systemic racism in Rochester. An active member of the community, she regularly joins government officials and civic leaders in addressing issues of racial injustice.

That work came into sharp focus in summer 2020 and she and her elder peers helped ease tensions between the Rochester City Police Department and Black Lives Matters protesters demanding justice for Daniel Prude. A Democrat and Chronicle article from September 2020 describes her “going toe to toe with a wall of police officers to search for a peaceful resolution” amid the protests at City Hall and an article from City News recounts how she opened her church during the demonstrations, creating a sanctuary for protesters. As Rochester continues to grapple with strained police-community relations, Brown tells 55+ Magazine that she hopes to serve as a “‘bridge’ to build ‘a better city and a better group of human beings.’”

During her talk at Fisher, she will bring her wisdom and passion for social justice to campus, connecting current issues to the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.