Black History Month Speaker Dr. Valerie D. Lewis-Mosley
Dr. Valerie D. Lewis-Mosley – a healer, a scholar and pastoral theologian – is right at home at Mount St. Dominic Academy and joined the Mount community in celebration of Black History Month. While Dr. Lewis-Mosley is not an MSDA alumna, she is as close as they come – as a graduate of St. Dominic Academy in Jersey City – the Mount’s “mother school” as she pointed out given her alma mater’s 14 years of history that pre-date the Mount’s founding. Her early memories of Mount St. Dominic Academy date back to her high school basketball career, when the two schools were fierce basketball rivals. Her Mount connections run even deeper – with a nearly life-long friendship with Sister Peggy Ann.
Currently an Adjunct Professor of Theology at Caldwell University, Dr. Lewis-Mosley is a Lay Associate of the Sisters of St. Dominic of Caldwell, and lectures and preaches extensively on Spirituality and Evangelization. She has served in a liaison capacity for many years to the AHANA (individuals of African, Hispanic, Asian and Native American descent) undergraduate community of Boston College. With a diverse and impressive professional and academic background, Dr. Lewis-Mosely is retired from clinical obstetrical nursing practice from New York Hospital Weill-Cornell University Medical Center. A lector and Eucharistic minister, Dr. Lewis-Mosley serves on the Archdiocesan Advisory Board of the Office of Black Catholic Ministries and is a member of the Black Catholic Theological Symposium.
Dr. Lewis-Mosley approached her presentation to the students as “free from gadgets and gimmicks and in the spirit of love,” and in the form of prayer and praise, pointing out that the significance of celebrating Black History Month is to accentuate the value of the lives of those from the African Diaspora. She stressed that we should think about Black History Month as a legacy and narrative of a people, strongly rooted in the fabric of our nation – a tapestry representative of all that God has put forth. She noted that we need to know and understand the narrative and legacy of someone’s life, their lived experiences (not just stories) in order to be more tolerant, to change perceptions and to grow and learn in love. “We can do better when we know better,” she said, noting that the Dominican charism that is part of the Mount, part of the students, can empower the young women to change the world, to roar like the lady lions they are, to stand in the face of evil and challenge it, to recognize that every life is precious – from the womb to the tomb.
“Challenge the injustice you find yourself in the midst of,” Dr. Lewis-Mosley said. “Act with agency and speak your truth… be the voice that says all lives matter. Run the race for social justice.”