I read this article today about how quickly the Church is growing in the South:
The idea of the article is basically that the Church in the western U.S. is growing, but mainly because of Hispanic immigration. Catholics are very lax and disengaged in “the north.” And, in the South, because religiosity is pervasive there and because of the need to learn the faith amidst the vocally Protestant majority, the faith is absolutely on fire.
How true is that?
Here’s the problem I see with it. Aren’t most of these southern Catholics New York, Philly, and Boston transplants? Moreover, Boston is not a Catholic city. It is a deeply secular and even anti-religious place. If hostility makes the faith grow, then wouldn’t the faith be most vibrant and alive in liberal, non-religious places like Boston, Philadelphia and Chicago?
Is there a particular part of place in America where the faith is truly on fire? Where parishes are full of young people and big families? Where orthodoxy is more common?
I attend a very old, generally not-so-fired-up parish in Denver, which is odd given that this archdiocese as well as Lincoln, NE are known to be two of the most passionate, evangelical dioceses in the country. Yet I’ve heard a lot about Knoxville and Atlanta, too.
Are there truly vibrant, orthodox, youthful dioceses in Philly and Boston, or is the Catholic center of devotional gravity really moving to the south?