Jesuit Priests Pledge $100 Million in Reparations to Make Amends for Slave Labor and Sales

In the early 1800s, the Maryland Jesuit order of priests owned hundreds of enslaved people, forcing them to work on plantations and profiting off their sale. A 2016 New York Times exposé showed that in 1838, to keep the struggling Georgetown University alive, the priests shipped 272 enslaved people to the notoriously brutal plantations in the Deep South.

Now, the Jesuits have begun to atone. A new Descendants Truth and Reconciliation Foundation has been created in conjunction with descendants of those the Jesuits enslaved, funded with an initial $15 million. The Jesuits have pledged a total of $100 million to be spent on racial reconciliation grants, as well as scholarships and grants for the descendants. A subset of the funds will be used for emergency care for elderly descendants.

Descendants learned that their ancestors had been sold during the reporting of the 2016 New York Times exposé, which led to the negotiations and creation of this new foundation.

You can read that story by clicking on the link below.

Senior Writer at OneZero covering surveillance, facial recognition, DIY tech, and artificial intelligence. Previously: Qz, PopSci, and NYTimes.

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