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Handbook of Denominations in the United States 11th Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Having used it to look at a few denominations with which I am familiar and many with which I am not, the authors appear to have painstakingly made the summaries as unbiased and fair as possible. Oftentimes, they quote directly from official denominational literature. I also appreciate the appendices which refer the researcher to further information on a particular denomination.
The large denominational categories covered, with many subcategories each are:
3. Brethren and Pietist Churches
4. Catholic Churches
5. Christian Church (Stone-Campbell Movement)
6. Congregational Churches
7. Episcopal/Anglican Churches
8. Friends (Quakers)
9. Fundamentalist/Bible Churches
10. Holines Churches
13. Latter-day Saints (Mormons)
15. Mennonite Churches
16. Methodist Churches
17. Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches
18. Pentecostal Churches
19. Presbyterian Churches
20. Reformed Churches
21. Salvation Army
22. Spiritualist and Theosophical Bodies
There are many others that cannot be put under these broad categories that are too numerous to mention here. This book appears to have succeeded in what it set out to accomplish: give a concise but accurate depiction of various church sects throughout the United States.
Also, I found Hill's statistics to often be very dated. For example, the stats on the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) were about 6-8 years out of date. The PCA was one of the fastest growing evangelical denominations in America during that time, and as a result Hill's stats are about half of the accurate number (150,000 rather than 300,000). Many smaller Presbyterian denominations (at least 3 I could think of) were not even listed.
What can we expect, though, when the book is trying to be all things to all people? With the book covering such a variety of denominations (as well as nonChristian sects, such as JWs, Mormons, and Christian Science), it would probably be impossible to be too indepth and still have a marketable product that would remain affordable (as the current edition is). What do I know, though, because it made it to its 10th edition? How many books can say the same! Perhaps, though, someone in the future would want to create a more user-friendly edition (with graphs and charts) and eliminate the fringe groups or mere nonChristian world religions (such as Judaism). Leave these faiths to a separate volume or to other authors (yes, numerous books on these groups have already been done). If you then dedicated 3-5 pages to each major denomination (100,000 or more members) and 1-2 pages to denominations 10,000-100,000 in size, making it more user-friendly, you might make us 4-star partial skeptics into 5-star full-on believers.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very thorough and accurate from what I can tell only having it for several days. A great referencePublished 25 days ago by Bill Rowley
Needed for college course, but have delved back in several times for other references.Published 2 months ago by Daniel M.
If you're looking for a concise, easy to understand, but highly informative resource on the differences and likenesses of the different religions and denominations in the US, this... Read morePublished 2 months ago by D. Deitz
An incredibly detailed survey and an essential companion to any serious study of American faith systems. Highly recommended, as is anything authored/edited by Craig D. Atwood.Published 3 months ago by SJM BROWN
It covers the very basic beliefs and gives a brief history on each denomination, if you're looking for some in depth knowledge on a particular denomination then I would not... Read morePublished 4 months ago by JDW
I love this book and have used it many many times for brief accurate information. I am part of an ecumenical community, and understanding each other's faith is very important.Published 5 months ago by J-T Kelly