Bishop Holly Chapter

A 200 Year Tradition of Black Leadership in the Episcopal Church

Organized in 1968 as the Union of Black Clergy and Laity (and renamed in 1971), the Union of Black Episcopalians (UBE)  is part of a 200 year tradition of black leadership in the Episcopal Church. UBE now has over 55 chapters and interest groups in the United States, Canada, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The goals for the organization are to develop leadership among people of African descent, to support and sustain financially – predominately black congregations and other affirming, black organizations, and to work with others to eliminate racism and injustice within the Episcopal Church and in society.

The Bishop James Theodore Holly Chapter of the Union of Black Episcopalians operates out of St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in Buffalo, NY – and represents individuals and congregations within the Western New York and Northwestern Pennsylvania Dioceses.

In 2021, our goals are:

  1. To build our membership, especially among our youth and young adult constituency
  2. To continue our work with incarcerated people and to mitigate the harm of mass incarceration on families and communities
  3. To work collaboratively with the Commission to Dismantle Racism and Discrimination on their efforts within the Diocesan Partnership

We are beginning to explore ways to connect with organizations and faith leaders in communities of color in Northwestern Pennsylvania. And, we will host a number of events that provide educational, spiritual and cultural opportunities for enrichment and connection. Check out our calendar for more information! All are welcome to participate in our events. 

Committees/Working Groups

  • Prison Advocacy: continuing our work in collaboration with the New York Campaign for Alternatives to Isolated Confinement (NYCAIC) and #HALT - Humane Alternatives to Long-Term (HALT) Solitary Confinement
  • Anti-racism: providing resources to and support for white allies who are interested in bringing a message of racial equality to family members and other white people in their congregations
  • Young Adult Outreach:  in collaboration with St. Philip's Episcopal Church, we will create a special outreach mission to students of African descent on local State University of New York (SUNY) campuses