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Abandoned graves ignite reckoning over slavery at Md. church

Sacred Heart Chapel in Bowie, Maryland is the birthplace of the Roman Catholic Church in the United States. It’s where John Carroll was elected the first bishop in the newly formed country. It’s a history parishioners hold with pride. But there’s also shame. Carroll also ran a tobacco plantation that enslaved African Americans. This year, newly discovered graves – that are believed to be the burial ground of slaves – ignited a reckoning at Sacred Heart Chapel. WTOP’s John Domen takes us to this site and shares the voices of priests, church-goers and descendants — each trying to honor the forgotten and neglected graves. 

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