This photograph, “Play Street,” was taken in 1972 at St. Columba parish in Philadelphia, PA. St. Columba, which closed in 1993, was formerly located at 2340 W. Lehigh Avenue. I’m sure these children have fond memories of the fun sisters who worked there! Photo is courtesy of The Robert and Theresa Halvey Collection, Philadelphia Archdiocesan Historical Research Center, Philadelphia, PA.
When The Catholic Gene premiered last month, I promoted the site by describing us authors as friends who share a love for both genealogical research and the Roman Catholic faith. Then I remembered – didn’t I once hear about a book on both topics? If there was ever a book that was perfectly suited for this blog, it would be My Cousin the Saint by Justin Catanoso. Published in 2008, it was neglected on my “to be read” list ever since. Fortunately, I remedied that by reading it to review here – and I’m sorry it took me so long to get to it because it’s an inspiring story for anyone interested in either the church, family history, or both topics.
In learning about his family’s Italian Catholic heritage, the author discovered a rather interesting fact – his grandfather’s cousin was on the road to bona fide sainthood in the Catholic Church. What is it like to have a saint in your family? Catanoso digs deeper to learn more about this saintly relation, and in the process he learns about family, faith, and miracles.
A miracle maker? In our family? Could this really be possible? How come I had never heard of this person before? And even if I had, my Catholic moorings were so tenuous that I had little means to make sense of something so incredible.
Catanoso’s grandfather’s story is one that many genealogists can relate to no matter their country of origin. At age sixteen, Carmelo Catanoso arrived at Ellis Island in 1903 in an effort to find a better life than the harsh conditions in his homeland – in his case, southern Italy (Calabria). Once here, he never looked back. Carmelo’s story is the typical American success story – and, like so many of our grandparents and great-grandparents, he became an American and spoke little of his humble roots or the family he left behind.
One of the family members back in Italy was Gaetano Catanoso, Carmelo’s first cousin. Gaetano’s life led down a different path – he became a priest. Rather than escaping the poverty and suffering like so many emigrants, Padre Gaetano saw his mission in life as an opportunity to help those who were suffering. The author describes the Padre’s call as a simple yet radical idea: “Through trust and prayer you can build your faith and soon life your own life above the muck of despair.” In a land and time where “trust no one” was a more apropos motto, the young priest slowly changed hearts, minds, and souls. In sixty years as a priest he became a humble example of faith and piety, founded an order of nuns, and was remembered years after his death for his love for God and others.
My Cousin the Saint explores several different themes. First is the family story and uncovering the mysteries of ancestors. Where did they come from? Why did they leave their homeland? What was it like? Genealogists are well familiar with these questions. While this isn’t a book about research methods or sources, Catanoso’s story to learn more about his grandfather’s roots and his journey to meet his previously unknown cousins is one that most family researchers will find familiar.
A second theme is the process of sainthood – what is a saint anyway? And how does one become a saint? Why do we even need saints? Catanoso explores the meaning of sainthood and the church’s process to formally recognize individuals who have led saintly lives through canonization. The topics of miracles and intercessory prayer become personal when tragedy befalls Catanoso’s family.
Finally, the book is about the saint. St. Gaetano Catanoso may be the author’s cousin and he may have inspired the author to reconnect to his own Catholic faith, but the Padre’s story is one that will inspire all of us. Catanoso feels a personal connection to his cousin and calls him “a new prism through which to view life, a model of goodness to strive for, a rock to stand upon in times of sorrow.” Personally, I was struck by the Padre’s catchphrase of “in domino” – in God, always in God. His trust in God and his desire to help others in need motivates me and reminds me to place my trust in God more than I do.
In a small way, Catanoso’s family story reminded me of the parallel path of two cousins in my Polish Catholic family. My great-grandfather emigrated to the U.S. in 1907 and labored in the textile factories of Philadelphia. His first cousin stayed in Poland and became a soldier, a painter, and ultimately a resistance fighter against the Nazi regime. He was imprisoned for his resistance work and died at Auschwitz in 19 42 while his wife and son were put to death in two other camps. I don’t know if the cousin was a saint or led a saintly life, but I do know that he was a hero – and his story is one that the American cousins were never told.
My Cousin the Saint is about one man’s journey and how both family and faith affect him on his way. We all have different families, we come from different cultures, and we may even have different faiths. But traveling along with Justin Catanoso on his journey will delight and inspire you – and perhaps even teach you something about faith, family, and miracles.
St. Gaetano Catanoso, pray for us!
For more information:
My Cousin the Saint by Justin Catanoso. HarperCollins Publishers. 2008. Hardcover 978-0-06-123102-5; Paperback 978-0-06-172932-4.
Biography of St. Gaetano Catanoso – Vatican web site
Book and author web site
On this day, the Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary (that resides within October, the Month of the Holy Rosary), The Catholic Gene takes a look at the centuries-old devotion that is making a resurgence in the lives of the faithful and may have played a role in the daily life of many of our Catholic ancestors’ families.
In her recent article, Full of Grace: Reclaiming the Rosary, Alice Camille, M. Div. gives a nice overview of the recent renewed interest in the Rosary and its value as a tool to “ponder the greatest events in salvation history” through the eyes of Mary, the young woman from Nazareth who watched them unfold before her. As explained on the Catholic Culture website, “The Rosary is a Christocentric setting forth of the entire life of Jesus Christ, the passion, death, resurrection and glory.”
The Rosary is a series of prayers repeated while those praying (individually or in a group) focus their thoughts on the various moments of joy, light, sorrow and glory during the life of Jesus and his mother Mary. The prayers are inspired by – and often taken word for word from – the Bible. In the rhythm of prayer that the Rosary creates, the faith-filled Catholic can take time within his or her day to rise from the duties and tasks of everyday life, and to find inspiration for living.
It is a way of prayer that has been practiced by Catholics throughout the world for centuries. As far back as the 13th century, the Rosary was present within the church close to its current form, and was being promoted by religious orders such as the Dominicans, Franciscans, Cistercians and Servites. Since various family branches of my Eastern European ancestors lived in an area with a strong Franciscan influence, I have no doubt that the Rosary played a role in their faith lives for many generations. (More on the devotion to the Rosary within my family tree in an upcoming article later this month.) If you, too, have Catholic ancestors, chances are that this traditional way of prayer was a part of their lives, too.
During the 15th century as the Ottoman Empire was ravaging Eastern Europe (Constantinople had fallen to the Turks in 1453), devotion to the Rosary was growing throughout much of the continent. In the year 1569, Pope Pius V (a Dominican) first officially established devotion to the Rosary within the Catholic Church through the Consueverunt Romani Pontifices (this link provides an English summary of this document). Only two short years later in 1571, Catholic Europe found itself facing the wrath of the Ottoman Empire at a location too close for comfort – off the coast of western Greece. The Holy League – a coalition of Catholic states coordinated by Pope Pius V – took on the defense of Europe.
As the naval Battle of Lepanto raged, the faithful throughout all of Europe prayed the Rosary for victory at the request of Pope Pius V. Their prayers were answered and Catholic Europe was spared. The victory prevented the Muslim forces from taking complete control of the Mediterranean Sea and reaching further into the south of Europe. Rome and western Europe were saved from a devastating invasion by the Ottoman Turks.
In celebration and thanksgiving to God, Pope Pius V declared that October 7 would be remembered as the Memorial of Our Lady of Victory. Today the day is celebrated throughout the universal church as the Memorial of the Most Holy Rosary, and the month of October is dedicated to the Rosary.
If you think the Rosary might have played a role in the lives of your Catholic ancestors, you may be interested in reading more about the history of the devotion. John D. Miller’s book Beads and Prayers: The Rosary in History and Devotion is an interesting overview. The book places special emphasis within several chapters on the development of the Rosary within England and Ireland as well as continental Europe. His book also references an extensive online timeline of the Rosary’s history entitled Journaling the Bead by the Rosary Workshop.
If you find, as I did, a reference in one of your ancestor’s obituaries to membership within the Confraternity of the Most Rosary or a similar society, you may be interested in looking into the history and activities of the organization. My great-grandmother, a member of the Mother Butler Society, hand-knotted Rosaries for many years to be sent to missions in other countries.
I am very happy to have inherited one of her Rosaries, and have enjoyed passing down her love for the devotion to my children. My daughters are following in their great-great-grandmother’s footsteps in a way. They use another technique – beading – to create beautiful Rosary bracelets, sharing the age old faith they have inherited with a new generation of faith-filled Catholics.
As this week the Catholic church celebrates the Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary and remembers the life of the beloved St. Francis of Assisi, I’d like to introduce you to a peaceful oasis in the midst of the nation’s capital that was built in St. Francis’ honor and includes the beautiful Rosary Portico. My family and I have enjoyed making several visits to the Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land in Washington D.C. Its Rosary Portico is a picturesque covered walkway surrounding the glorious Memorial Church of the Holy Sepulchre. It was designed in the style of the cloister of St. John Lateran in Rome and St. Paul’s Outside the Walls.
It is a beautiful walk, surrounded by charming gardens, and made even more interesting by a series of mosaics depicting the mysteries of the Rosary and a string of Hail Marys and Our Fathers in a multitude of languages which accompany you as you follow the path around the church. The generous number of artistic ceramic panels depicting the prayers of the Rosary (their website says nearly 200 – I didn’t count them!) includes many of the world’s languages – both modern and ancient. I was thrilled to find the languages that were common to my various ancestral families – even Glagolitic, the most ancient of the Slavic languages.
If you’d like to browse through the Angelic Blessing (another name for the Hail Mary) in these many languages, and possibly search for the language of your ancestors, visit the monastery’s Ave Maria book online. You’ll find Anglo-Saxon to Zulu and everything in between.
If you are in the Washington D.C. area, I encourage you to take some time to make a visit to this beautiful oasis in the middle of the capital, take a peaceful walk, and search for the prayers in the languages of your ancestors.
What do October 6, Chartreuse liquor, the Carthusian Order, and the National Archives at San Francisco have in common? The answer is that all have a connection with Saint Bruno the Confessor.
Saint Bruno the Confessor was born in about the year 1030 in what is now Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany.
Sculpture of Saint Bruno by Portuguese artist Manuel Pereira
SOURCE: Luis Garcia, San Bruno (http://tinyurl.com/3mrg8xr : accessed 05 October 2011).
Bruno, a member of the Hartenfaust or Hardebüst family, was educated at Reims where he later returned to head the school at Reims from 1057 to 1075. When Bruno’s friend Archbishop Gervais de Château-du-Loir of Reims died, the Archbishop was succeeded by Manasses de Gournai, an impious and violent man. Bruno and the clergy at Reims convinced the papal legate, Hugh of Die, to suspend Manasses de Gournai who responded by razing the houses of his accusers and confiscating their goods. Manasses de Gournai sought refuge with Emperor Henry IV.
In 1084, Bruno and several companions left Reims for Chartreuse where they built a small monastery and lived lives of prayer and study in retreat from the outside world. In 1088, a former pupil of Bruno, Eudes of Châtillon, was elected Pope under the name Urban II. Pope Urban II called Bruno to serve him in Rome. A short time later, the Pope was forced to retreat to southern Italy following the victory of the antipope Guibert of Ravenna and Emperor Henry IV who had previously provided refuge to Manasses de Gournai.
On the way to southern Italy, Bruno again attempted to retreat into a quiet life of prayer and study and settled in the Diocese of Squillace in Calabria, Italy. It was there in Calabria where he died on 06 October 1101. Many miracles were worked at Bruno’s tomb in the hermitage of St. Mary. Although he was never formally canonized, on 17 February 1623 Pope Gregory XV entered his name into the Roman Catholic Calendar of Saints and designated that his feast be celebrated on October 6.
Saint Bruno is often depicted holding a death’s head, a book and a cross, or crowned with seven stars. He was the founder of the Carthusian Order.
In time, the Carthusian order built a substantial monastery, La Grande Chartreuse, at the site where Saint Bruno and his companions had retreated in 1084. In 1605, the monks were presented with a recipe for an elixir that was purported to confer long life. The monks prepared this elixir, composed of 130 alpine herbs in a wine alcohol base, for medicinal purposes.
SOURCE: Chartreuse (San Francisco, San Francisco County, California); photographed by Stephen J. Danko on 05 October 2011.
Today, Chartreuse is available commercially and the sales of Chartreuse support the Carthusian monastery in Chartreuse. The liquor, containing 55% alcohol by volume, is unique in that the color of the liquor led to the name of the color chartreuse. In addition to green chartreuse, the monks also prepare a sweeter yellow chartreuse, colored with saffron, which is 40% alcohol by volume.
In 1775, Captain Bruno de Heceta, a Basque explorer, was sent to map the coast of western North America. On that voyage, he sighted a mountain on the San Francisco peninsula and named it for his patron saint, Saint Bruno the Confessor. In 1862, an inn and waystation along the route of the proposed railroad between San Francisco and San Jose was built. Later, at the base of Mount San Bruno, the city of San Bruno, California grew up.
The city of San Bruno gained some fame for Tanforan, a racetrack for horses. The Tanforan Racetrack was the site of the first flight to ever take off from the west coast and gained further notoriety for its use as an internment site for Japanese Americans during World War II.
Today, San Bruno is mostly a bedroom community, but it has its share of shopping and entertainment venues as well. The National Archives at San Francisco is located in San Bruno not far from the San Francisco California Family History Center, the Golden Gate National Cemetery, and Saint Bruno’s Catholic Church.
On this day, October 6, I invite everyone to celebrate the Feast of Saint Bruno the Confessor by considering the impact that this man and saint who died 910 years ago still has on our lives today. And don’t forget to toast Saint Bruno with a glass of Chartreuse!
Most people wouldn’t think it was “cool” to have a nun in the family. For anyone who attended Catholic school, nuns were the teachers you typically revered, but mostly feared. Dressed in their long habits and stiff veils, with rosary beads in one hand and a long yardstick in the other, they could intimidate even the most pious child. For me, however, my father’s sister, a Roman Catholic nun, was one of the coolest people I knew. She didn’t scare me in the least. In fact, I admired, respected, and simply adored her.
Born on January 7, 1918 in Duquesne, Pennsylvania, a young Anna Alzo knew from the time she was 13 that she wanted to follow this vocation. Her father, John, was Roman Catholic, but her mother, Elizabeth, had been baptized Greek Catholic, but followed her husband to the Roman Catholic faith upon marriage.
On June 25, 1934, at age 16, Anna followed her calling and entered Nazareth convent in Victoria, Texas to begin her journey as a sister in the order of the Blessed Sacrament of the Incarnate Word. She chose the name Sister Mary Camilla. Mostly everyone just called her “Sister Camilla.” I called her “Auntie.”
I feel very lucky to have in my possession a scrapbook that “Auntie” kept documenting each step in her journey. On the inside cover, she wrote:
There are many photographs and other mementos and “Auntie” wrote down details and little notes for each one. It is a family treasure and I am currently in the process of scanning each page in this book. One of the mementos was a clipping from a San Antonio newspaper (year unknown) of an article entitled “Christ’s Career Women.” The article gives a brief history of the order, which was founded in France in 1625. The pioneers of the order in America arrived in Brownsville, Texas in 1853, and then in 1866 a colony of sisters founded the Nazareth convent in Victoria. My “Auntie” was the “model” nun for the photograph accompanying the article. She is dressed in her traditional garb—a white habit, with the cincture of very dark red leather. The scapular was also a very dark red color, with an embroidered crown of thorns and other symbols of the Passion. I know I’m biased, but I know they picked the right sister to be their “poster girl.” Not only was she devoted to her calling, and the most holy person I knew, but she was also a kind and generous teacher.
I’ve written about “Auntie” a few times on my own blog, The Accidental Genealogist, recounting some of my fondest memories, such as baking cookies with her at Christmas, and going on vacations in the summer, especially a trip to Canada to visit our Alzo relatives in Ontario. I loved spending time with her. Sometimes we played cards, other times we would sit in my Aunt Betty’s (Auntie “B”’s) kitchen and “Auntie” would attempt to teach me Slovak. I learned how to count from one to ten, and to say the “Our Father.” “Auntie” also loved to write letters. I have stacks of them she sent to me, and some she sent to my parents, my grandparents, and my aunt. Many were handwritten. Some were typed. “Auntie” was an excellent writer. Her letters always read like stories, and she had perfect penmanship. How I loved getting those letters! “Auntie” was also my family’s first “genealogist” although she never identified herself as such. In the 70s “Auntie” typed up a one-page family narrative based on stories her cousin, Mary Hatala, had told her, and I was able to use this account to track the details about many of my paternal ancestors. So not only was “Auntie” a positive influence on my spiritual life, but I’m pretty certain that “Auntie” is my muse—both for my love of writing and my interest in genealogy.
“Auntie” passed away in 1986. She had a difficult time during the last years of her life. She suffered for many years after something went wrong during an operation and the effects of the anesthesia left her basically unable to care for herself, and unable to walk. The sisters at the convent in Victoria took care of her. Her letters during that time revealed her determination, her unwavering faith, and her acceptance of her own suffering. She was devoted to her vocation until the very end, continuing to serve the purpose of the congregation, which is “the glory of God, and the sanctification of its members.”
In 2003, during a visit to Texas, I got to visit the convent in Victoria and speak to many of the sisters who knew my “Auntie.” I also had a chance to visit her gravesite since she is buried in the cemetery near the convent.
Whether she was “crusading for Christ” or inspiring her young niece to be a writer and genealogist, Sister Mary Camilla Alzo left her mark on the world. And that, I think, is pretty cool.
Today we celebrate the Feast of St Francis D’Assisi. In honor of this occasion, and in conjunction with October being Polish Heritage Month, I bring you the story of St Francis D’Assisi Catholic Church in Detroit, Michigan.
St Francis D’Assisi Catholic Church was the 4th Polish parish to be organized in Detroit (following St Albertus (1872), St Casimir (1881), and Sweetest Heart of Mary (1897)). The Polish population in Detroit was growing rapidly in the late 1800s and through the turn of the century. As a result, several members of St Casimir parish petitioned the Diocese of Detroit for a new parish in the area of Junction and Buchanan streets. Their petition was granted and a pastor was appointed to organize a new parish.
St Francis’s first pastor, Reverend Romuald Byzewski, directed the building of the first structure on property purchased at Wesson and Buchanan streets. That building was a combination church (upper level) and school (lower level). The church sat 700 people and opening enrollment at the school was 300 pupils. The first Mass was celebrated in the church on Easter Sunday of 1890.
The new little parish continued to grow and when Reverend Feliks Kieruj succeeded Rev. Byzewski as pastor of St Francis he conducted a drive for a new, larger church building. The new building was opened in June of 1905 and a grand church it was! The church seats 1700, has beautiful stained glass windows, and is Italian Renaissance in design. It is 230 feet long and 123 feet wide and cost $145,000.00 to build.
The drive to build the new church was so successful that Rev. Kieruj continued his effort and oversaw the building of a rectory, convent, and a parish hall. Later a new, larger school building was built.
As a result of all this building, the parish accumulated substantial debt. Father Alexander Grudzinski was successful in getting the debt paid off and as a reward for doing so the church of St Francis was consecrated on June 4, 1929. It was the first church consecrated in Michigan and only the fifth in the U.S. My mother always told me that a consecrated church cannot be added on to or sold. It must stand until it crumbles of its own accord. You can read details about church consecration at the Catholic Encyclopedia web site.
At the time St Francis Church was built, the neighborhood it was in was made up largely of Polish immigrants. They attended Mass there, sent their children to the parish school, and for the most part were buried in nearby Holy Cross Cemetery. Over the years, starting in the 1940s with the building of area expressways and accelerating in the 1960s and 70s, the original Polish immigrants died or moved out of the area to nearby suburbs. The population that moved in was first African American and later Hispanic. More recently the neighborhood has succumb to urban blight with more empty lots than houses. It’s a sad state for this once vibrant neighborhood of Polish immigrants. St Francis D’Assisi Church still stands at the corner of Wesson and Buchanan Streets and the parish is still viable. However, there are few with Polish heritage that attend this church anymore. Mostly the parish is made up of Hispanic residents now. They may hear Mass in a different language than those who built the church but they too work hard to keep the parish going. That’s not an easy task in a depressed urban setting.
The parish school is no longer in operation. The building was leased/sold to another group that runs the Hope of Detroit Academy there now.
I have many family ties to St Francis D’Assisi Church. My paternal grandparents lived just one block southwest from the church/school property. Here is a view from the property where my grandparent’s home once stood, looking back at St Francis school and church.
My father and all of my paternal aunts and uncles attended St Francis grade school. Several of my aunts and uncles married at St Francis as well. When my parents married, their first home was on Campbell Street, one block north of the church/school property. My brothers were baptized at St Francis and started grade school there as well before my family moved to the suburbs. Here is a view of the church/school grounds from my parent’s first house on Campbell Street.
I visit the church from time to time and try imagine what it must have been like in the 1910-1950 era when it was in a densely populated community of first and second generation Polish immigrants. It’s easy to imagine when inside the church, where little has changed. It’s much harder to imagine outside the church where empty lots and decaying buildings are prevalent. It is my fervent hope that the beautiful St Francis Church will remain standing for many, many years to come. Maybe one day the city of Detroit will experience a rebirth and the neighborhood around the church will thrive again. St Francis is the patron saint of animals and the environment. Perhaps he will bless the rebuilding of the neighborhood where previous residents erected a grand church in his honor.
The Souvenir book of the Golden Jubilee of St. Francis Parish, 1890-1940 has been cataloged and is searchable on the PGSA web site.
The following microfilms of St. Francis church records are available at the Burton Historical Collection of the Detroit Public Library: Film No.1042
Reel 1: Baptisms April 1891-June 1911
Reel 2: Baptisms June 1910-March 1918
Reel 3: Baptisms March 1918-February 1931
Marriages January 1916-October 1938
Deaths January 1920-May 1950
Reel 4: Marriages May 1891-1916
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
- How many Catholics are there in the world? Or in the USA? Or your town and state? Think about that for a moment.
- If one looks to the U.S. Census population figures just released for 2010, the answer is there are no Catholics in the USA. But the census population figures also show no Protestants, Jews, Muslims, or Hindus, Buddhists, or Unitarian Universalists. That’s because the Census Bureau is prohibited by law from asking mandatory questions about religious beliefs. The prohibition has not always existed and at various times throughout U.S. history, federal census takers have asked questions about religious belief. The practice was always controversial, as anyone familiar with either the American Constitution or Americans’ general personal constitutions might well imagine.
- In other countries, however, governments do collect official statistics on religious belief and church membership. Again, however, in many countries, such inquiries are also highly controversial.Just how do we know that there are 1.188 billion Catholics around the world? This is the “official” figure given by the Vatican’s Central Statistics Office in the Annuario Pontifico 2010 [Pontifical Yearbook 2010].
- This figure is derived from government statistics where permitted, private research, and of course, the Church’s own census taking, starting at the parish level. There are “independent” Catholic institutions engaged in demographic research such as Georgetown University’s Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Other authoritative sources are The Official Catholic Directory, published by National Register Publishing Co., the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, and independent researcher David M. Cheney, who runs the website Catholic-Hierarchy.org.
- One source of independent research on religious affiliations is, strangely enough, The CIA World Factbook, published by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. The 2011 edition of the Factbook covers 165 countries and includes statistics about religious affiliations in each country. The CIA data is consistent with other, nongovernmental research on religious institutions and affiliations.The worldwide Catholic population of 1.182 billion persons constitutes more than 17% of the world’s total population, making Catholicism the largest religious denomination in the world.The total U.S. Catholic population is reportedly between 65,400,000 and 77,800,000 persons. The lower figure is the “official” number; the higher 77.8 million number is based on self-identity survey data. In any event, researchers generally regard Catholics as making up about 24% (+/-1%) of the total U.S. Population and about 30% of all American Christians. The next largest religious group in the U.S. Is the Southern Baptist Convention with about 16.6 million members, about one-third the number of Catholics.
The “most” Catholic states in the U.S. are Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Rhode Island, each with about 42% Catholic populations. California, Illinois, and Nebraska follow with 31% each.
The “least” Catholic state is Arkansas with a mere 5% Catholic population.
Of the nearly one-quarter of Americans who are Catholic, only a quarter of them (5%) are African-American. As for Hispanics, CARA recently reported that, “The proportion of Hispanics who are Catholic and Protestant remains unclear, partly because of varying survey methodologies and limited understanding of how that variation affects estimates of Hispanic religious identification.”
The CARA paper further states “Estimates of the proportion of Hispanics or Latinos in the United States who identify as Catholic vary considerably, from slightly over half to 90 percent [citing a 2000 Department of Health and Human Services report]. No clear consensus has emerged among scholars, and debate persists among church leaders and activists.
Methodologies and data from eleven different papers are then examined. The CARA researchers finally state “We conclude that 70 percent or slightly more is a reasonable estimate of the proportion of adult Hispanics who are Catholic, and 20 percent a reasonable estimate of the proportion Protestant or other Christian.”
How Many Hispanics are Catholic? A Review of Survey Data and Methodology, (P. Perl, J.Z. Greely, and M. M. Gray, Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, Georgetown University, 2006).
A Catholic Gene Puzzler
1. In which of the following jurisdictions would one most likely encounter a Catholic?
B. Great Britain
C. East Timor
D. Arkansas USA
2. Which of the following countries has a Catholic population larger than the total populations of Los Angeles and Chicago combined?
3. Name four of the five “most” (greatest %) Catholic countries in the world.
4. In the Nicene Creed, Catholics profess to “believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.” As a point of canon law, however, the Catholic Church consists of ______(number) of sui iuris churches in the Catholic communion.”
Put your answers in the comments. Correct answers will be posted Wednesday, October 5, 2011, in the comments.