Lonely Planet review
Let the spirit move you at DC’s oldest black Catholic congregation. Clad in Kente cloth and sporting soloists just waiting to bust their lungs, the 165 members of the St Augustine gospel choir rock the house every Sunday at 12:30pm. The mass is long, but it’s a hell of a lot of fun and spiritually nourishing to boot. For calmer but equally beautiful music, come for 10am mass, when the church chorale sings traditional Catholic hymns.
Founded in 1858, St Augustine’s congregation moved to the Gothic-revival building at 15th and V Sts NW in 1961. It was a bold move, and marked a merger with an all-white congregation; the joined churches became known as Sts Paul & Augustine. The name reverted to St Augustine in 1982, but the congregation continues to welcome members of all races and ethnic groups. If you go, wear your Sunday best.