The Catholic Church stands at the forefront of an emergent majority-minority America. Parish and Place tells the story of how the largest religion in America is responding at the local level to unprecedented cultural, racial, linguistic, ideological, and political diversification among its membership. While the Catholic Church is traditionally organized geographically, this is not always the case. According to Church law, bishops may establish "personalparishes" to serve not a given territory, but a defined, niche purpose-to accommodate variance in "rite, language, or nationality" or "for some other reason." Nearly all of the United States' Catholic dioceses have such parishes, but few know about them. Tricia Bruce offers the first sociological study ofpersonal parishes, based on an original national survey of U.S. Catholic dioceses, ethnographic data gathered through field observation at 67 personal parishes in fifteen dioceses, and interviews with pastors, diocesan leaders, and bishops. Bruce argues that while personal parish designations come from the top down, they are simultaneously shaped by bottom-up parishioner choices. Parish and Place demonstrates the interdependence of grassroots behavior and institutional authority in buildinglocal religious communities.
Parish and Place
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