Simon of Cyrene 

Elder James E. Talmage

Jesus the Christ

African Man Who Bore Christ’s Cross

Though there is no concrete evidence either way to prove the color of Simon’s skin, we know he was from Africa and that he bore the cross of our Savior, Jesus Christ. 

Luke 23:26

26.And as they led him away, they laid hold upon one Simon, a Cyrenian, coming out of the country, and on him they laid the cross, that he might bear it after Jesus.

Elder James E. Talmage 

“Simon the Cyrenian.—Simon, upon whom the cross of Jesus was laid, was a member of the Jewish colony in northern Africa, which had been established nearly three centuries before the birth of Christ by Ptolemeus Lagi, who transported thither great numbers of Jews from Palestine (Josephus, Antiquities, xii, chap. 1). Cyrene, the home of Simon, was in the province of Libya; its site is within the present boundaries of Tunis. That the African Jews were numerous and influential is evidenced by the fact that they maintained a synagog in Jerusalem (Acts 6:9 for the accommodation of such of their number as visited the city. Rufus and his mother are mentioned in friendly reference by Paul over a quarter of a century after the death of Christ  (Romans 16:13). If this Rufus be one of the sons of Simon named by Mark (15:21), as tradition indicates, it is probable that Simon’s family was prominently identified with the Primitive Church. As to whether Simon had become a disciple before the crucifixion, or was converted through his compulsory service in bearing the Lord’s cross, or became a member of the Church at a later date, we are not definitely told.”

Jesus the Christ – Chapter 35

Simon of Cyrene by Suzanne Ley

Simon of Cyrene by Lisa Samra