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American Catholics / Edition 1

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Overview

How much do American Catholics still identify with the Catholic Church? Do they agree with the Church's teachings, and how often do they participate in its sacraments? What do they think it takes to be a good Catholic? What do they consider to be the Church's core teachings? How do they believe issues of faith and morals should be decided: by the hierarchy, the laity, or some combination of the two? How are they coping with the priest shortage, and what do they believe the Church should do to solve the problem? How do they feel about social issues such as capital punishment and increased military spending? In American Catholics, four distinguished sociologists use national surveys from 1999, 1993, and 1987 to examine these issues. They show that Catholics' beliefs and practices are changing. They also demonstrate how differences in gender, generation, and commitment to the Church influence attitudes on all of these issues. Balanced and clear, filled with useful tables and charts, and unique in its ability to compare results over time, American Catholics makes essential reading for anyone interested in the future of Catholicism in the United States.
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Editorial Reviews

Sociology of Religion
For anyone teaching and doing research on the American Catholic Church, this is an indispensable book.
— Susan A. Farrell, CUNY
Dolores R. Leckey
Whether you are a pastoral leader or a 'person in the pews,' American Catholics will help you understand the complexities of Catholic life in the third millennium. This study of attitudes, beliefs and trends is a needed resource for responsible pastoral initiatives based on intelligent use of these rich data. Surprising findings await readers of this important new book. I couldn't put it down.
Conscience - Sheila Briggs
This book provides an essential portrait of American Catholicism at the turn of the third millennium.
Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion - Loretta M. Morris
This a well-conceived study of American Roman Catholics whose Catholic identity, in nature and extent, has changed or is in the process of transformation.... The text is well written and liberally supported with tables and figures displaying the findings, often comparing the results of the three surveys. The book is written not only for the professional sociologist, but is also readily understandable to nonsociologists, while still holding its own under academic scrutiny.
Contemporary Sociology - Patricia Wittberg
American Catholics is an excellent summary and extension of the research of four of the top sociologists currently studying Catholicism in the United States. As such, it would be useful to several audiences.... Overall, this is an excellent book that fulfills its primary aim of summarizing some two decades of research on Catholic opinion for the audience that could most benefit from this knowledge. In the process, it also highlights some new issues that will be fruitful areas of research in the years to come. I look forward to the reports of additional studies by these authors in the future, as they continue to mine the riches of these data.
Catholic Issues - Kevin Breault and Terri R. Terrell
The authors provide important information about American Catholics and their attitude shifts over multiple generations.... By examining key elements of the American Catholics' belief system, along with Catholics' level of commitment to the Church, the researchers have been able to provide critical insight into current and possible future trends. Overall, this book is an important compilation of national data that will, among others, serve Catholics, laypersons and the academic community.... The book is informative and easily interpretable at every level of investigation which will help to popularize its important message.
Sociology of Religion: A Quarterly Review - Susan A. Farrell
For anyone teaching and doing research on the American Catholic Church, this is an indispensable book.
Conscience
This book provides an essential portrait of American Catholicism at the turn of the third millennium.
— Sheila Briggs, (University of Southern California)
The Cara Report
This work is especially helpful in the skillful way the accumulated data is put in the context of today's Church.
Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion
This a well-conceived study of American Roman Catholics whose Catholic identity, in nature and extent, has changed or is in the process of transformation.... The text is well written and liberally supported with tables and figures displaying the findings, often comparing the results of the three surveys. The book is written not only for the professional sociologist, but is also readily understandable to nonsociologists, while still holding its own under academic scrutiny.
— Loretta M. Morris, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles
Contemporary Sociology
American Catholics is an excellent summary and extension of the research of four of the top sociologists currently studying Catholicism in the United States. As such, it would be useful to several audiences.... Overall, this is an excellent book that fulfills its primary aim of summarizing some two decades of research on Catholic opinion for the audience that could most benefit from this knowledge. In the process, it also highlights some new issues that will be fruitful areas of research in the years to come. I look forward to the reports of additional studies by these authors in the future, as they continue to mine the riches of these data.
— Patricia Wittberg, (Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis)
Catholic Issues
The authors provide important information about American Catholics and their attitude shifts over multiple generations.... By examining key elements of the American Catholics' belief system, along with Catholics' level of commitment to the Church, the researchers have been able to provide critical insight into current and possible future trends. Overall, this book is an important compilation of national data that will, among others, serve Catholics, laypersons and the academic community.... The book is informative and easily interpretable at every level of investigation which will help to popularize its important message.
— Kevin Breault and Terri R. Terrell, Middle Tennessee State University
Sociology Of Religion
For anyone teaching and doing research on the American Catholic Church, this is an indispensable book.
— Susan A. Farrell, CUNY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780759100411
  • Publisher: AltaMira Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/2001
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 5.84 (w) x 8.96 (h) x 0.49 (d)

Meet the Author

William V. D'Antonio is a visiting research professor in the Department of Sociology at the Catholic University of America. James D. Davidson is professor of sociology at Purdue University. Dean R. Hoge is professor of sociology and director of the Life Cycle Institute at the Catholic University of America. Katherine Meyer is a professor in the Department of Sociology at Ohio State University.
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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 1.Setting the Stage: Trends and Issues in American Catholicism Chapter 2 2. Our Approach to the Issues: Theory, Methods, and Significance Chapter 3 3. The New Catholic Identity Chapter 4 4. Religious Practices: Catholics' Participation in the Sacraments and Devotional Activities Chapter 5 5. Moral Authority and Sexuality Chapter 6 6. Catholics and the Church's Social Teachings Chapter 7 7. Priest Shortage and Accommodations in Ministry Chapter 8 8. Participation, Democracy, and Decision Making Chapter 9 9. Summary and Implications
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