Saint Meinrad monk honored with three awards
November 08, 2012
Fr. Cyprian Davis, OSB, a monk of
Saint Meinrad Archabbey, St. Meinrad, IN, has been named the
recipient of three honors.
The National Black Catholic Congress (NBCC) gave its
Lifetime Achievement Servant of Christ Award to
Fr. Cyprian on July 21, during its conference in Indianapolis. Also
receiving the award were Beverly A. Carroll of Baltimore, MD, and
Jacqueline Wilson of Washington, D.C.
The Servant of Christ Award is a new award developed by the
leadership of NBCC to recognize those who personify Christian
servant leadership in the African-American community.
On December 3, Fr. Cyprian will receive the 2012 Eli
Lilly Lifetime Achievement Award from the Indiana
Historical Society (IHS).
The Eli Lilly Lifetime Achievement Award is given to an
individual who has made extraordinary contributions over an
extended period of time to the field of history and/or the affairs
The American Catholic Historical Association will
honor Fr. Cyprian with the Distinguished Teaching
Award on January 5. The honor is given annually to a
college or university professor who has demonstrated a high
commitment to teaching beyond the expected requirements of the
position and, through his or her influence and skill, has promoted
Catholic studies from one generation of scholars to another.
One of Fr. Cyprian's major projects, his 1990 publication
The History of Black Catholics in the United States,
resulted from his search for the documents and stories of
African-American Catholics. In 1991, the book received the
prestigious John Gilmary Shea Award from the American Catholic
In collaboration with others, he wrote or edited many other
notable publications, such as Taking Down Our Harps: Black
Catholics in the United States and Stamped with the Image
of God: African Americans as God's Image in Black.
Fr. Cyprian has traveled internationally, giving presentations
on the development of monastic archives at monasteries in Benin,
Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Senegal and Togo. He also taught Church
history at abbeys in Senegal and Nigeria. His commitment to
historical education in Africa represents an effort to nurture the
roots from which has grown the community whose life he has
Fr. Cyprian is professor emeritus of Church history at Saint
Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology.