Most histories of Catholicism in the United States focus on the experience of Euro-American Catholics, whose views on such concerns as church reform, social issues, and sexual ethics have dominated public debates. Latino Catholicism provides a comprehensive overview of the Latino Catholic experience in America from the sixteenth century to today, and offers the most in-depth examination to date of the important ways the U.S. Catholic Church, its evolving Latino majority, and American culture are mutually transforming one another.
Timothy Matovina assesses how Latinos' attempts to celebrate their faith and bring it to bear on the everyday realities of their lives have shaped parishes, apostolic movements, leadership, ministries, worship, voting patterns, social activism, and much more. At the same time, the lives and faith of Latino Catholics are being dramatically refashioned through the multiple pressures of assimilation, the upsurge of Pentecostal and evangelical religion, other types of religious pluralism, growing secularization, and ongoing controversies over immigration and clergy sexual abuse. Going beyond the widely noted divide between progressive and conservative Catholics, Matovina shows how U.S. Catholicism is being shaped by the rise of a largely working-class Latino population in a church whose leadership at all levels is still predominantly Euro-American and middle class.
Latino Catholicism highlights the vital contributions of Latinos to American religious and social life, demonstrating in particular how their engagement with the U.S. cultural milieu is the most significant factor behind their ecclesial and societal impact.
Timothy Matovina is professor of theology and the William and Anna Jean Cushwa Director of the Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism at the University of Notre Dame. His books include Guadalupe and Her Faithful: Latino Catholics in San Antonio, from Colonial Origins to the Present and Horizons of the Sacred: Mexican Traditions in U.S. Catholicism.
"Matovina gives a detailed examination of the different pastoral approaches that have been adopted to deal with the influx of Latino immigrants, with some advocating the need to assimilate quickly to American ways and others preferring to focus on preserving the religious and cultural heritage that the immigrants have brought with them. . . . Matovina's book should be mandatory reading for all bishops, clergy, and lay leaders, and for anyone else who wants to understand the future of American Catholicism."--Michael Sean Winters, New Republic
"Timothy Matovina, director of the Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism at the University of Notre Dame, offers a crash course on Hispanic Catholics and their impact. The book's chapter on the importance of popular religiosity in Hispanic worship and devotion--and the controversies it causes in multiethnic parishes--is especially good."--Catholic Sentinel
"Timothy Matovina, professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame, discusses the serious cultural, political, and class divisions in US Catholicism, and how the face of the US Catholic Church, and that of American society, is being changed by a growing Latino majority. His book . . . suggests that, while trying to understand this transformation by grouping all Latinos into one bloc may be convenient, the picture it gives of this demographic is unrealistic, since Spanish is a primary language in twenty-two different countries. But no matter their country of origin, Latinos bring a new and refreshing vitality to American culture and religion, including a devotional life that striving to find faith-filled expression deep and substantial enough for the demands of our time."--ForeWord
Table of Contents:
Chapter 1: Remapping American Catholicism 1
Chapter 2: Integration 42
Chapter 3: Hispanic Ministry 67
Chapter 4: Parishes and Apostolic Movements 98
Chapter 5: Leadership 132
Chapter 6: Worship and Devotion 162
Chapter 7: Public Catholicism 190
Chapter 8: Passing on the Faith 219 Epilogue: Transformation in America's Largest Church 245