Vital Signs

American Catholics Today
New Realities of Their Faith and Their Church
William V. D’Antonio, James D. Davidson, Dean R. Hoge, and Mary L. Gautier
Rowman & Littlefield, $24.95, 214 pp.


Once upon a time, U.S. Catholics thought that when they referred to the church they meant the entire community, the people of God. Frank Harrison, bishop of Syracuse, New York, was hardly alone when he titled his 1965 pastoral letter We Are the Church. His people were surprised at first; they had used the phrase “the church” to refer to the ordained men who constituted its visible organization. But good pastors like Bishop Harrison, with...

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About the Author

David O'Brien is University Professor of Faith and Culture at the University of Dayton.