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Young Catholic AmericaEmerging Adults In, Out of, and Gone from the Church$
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Christian Smith, Kyle Longest, Jonathan Hill, and Kari Christoffersen

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199341078

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199341078.001.0001

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Emerging Adult Catholics across Four Decades: 1970s to 2000s

Emerging Adult Catholics across Four Decades: 1970s to 2000s

Chapter:
(p.29) 2 Emerging Adult Catholics across Four Decades: 1970s to 2000s
Source:
Young Catholic America
Author(s):

Christian Smith

Kyle Longest

Jonathan Hill

Kari Christoffersen

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199341078.003.0003

This chapter places today’s American Catholic emerging adults in historical and cross-generational perspective by using General Social Survey national survey data to examine how much change (or lack of change) is observable across these population over time, since the early 1970s. It compares Catholic emerging adults today (those sampled in this study) to those of the same age-cohorts since the 1970s, and to emerging adults of other faiths today. The chapter shows that there is less decline in religious faith commitment and practice among Catholic youth than is commonly imagined, except on the crucial matter of Mass attendance, where a decline has been steep. This historical and comparative perspective provides a useful framework for understanding American Catholic emerging adults today.

Keywords:   General Social Survey, emerging adults, Mass attendance, religiosity, cohort comparisons, American Catholicism

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