Sense of the Faithful: How American Catholics Live Their Faith

Jerome Baggett wanted to know how Catholics live their faith, how they interact in their worship community and how they relate to the larger church and their civic community. So he visited six Catholic parishes in the San Francisco Bay area and interviewed or reviewed questionnaires filled out by 300 parishioners. He selected interview ees from a wide spectrum of ages, ethnic backgrounds and educational levels, and he sought out people who were active in their congregations. The parishes he chose to study were also diverse: one parish was predominantly made up of gay people, and another made regular Sunday use of the Latin mass (but not the Tridentine version). He looked at working-class and affluent parishes, and at congregations that offered mass in Vietnamese, Tagalog and Spanish, with devotional practices to match.


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