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Communion of Immigrants: A History of Catholics in America (Religion in American Life) Revised Edition
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He wrote in the Preface to this 2002 book, "The Catholic church grew enormously as a result of the mass immigration of European peoples to America between the 1840s and early 1920s... America is a nation of immigrants and the story of Catholics in America is largely the story of an immigrant church. The influx of an extraordinarily diverse population of newcomers since the 1960s has reinvigorated the church. The devotion of these immigrants and their families has shown once again that the Catholic experience is an integral force in the life of the nation."
He notes, "Puritans were zealous Protestants determined to eliminate all remnants of 'popery' or Catholic practice, in England as well as in her colonies... In 1654... Puritan zealots repealed the Act of Religious Toleration and ushered in an era of intolerance toward Catholics that would persist until the American Revolution." (Pg. 18) He adds, "In the early years of the nation, the great majority of American Catholics, like most of their fellow citizens, were more concerned with pursuing opportunities for themselves and their families than with issues of church governance.." (Pg.Read more ›