This book provides a critical sociology of religion in Latin America. Its purpose is to discuss the notion of religion as part of social, cultural, and political processes in capitalist societies, drawing on the classics of sociological thought (Marx, Durkheim, Weber, and Gramsci). Thus, churches are analyzed as organized institutions of religious mediation intimately linked to the production of social, cultural, and political hegemony in Latin America. The Catholic Church, the dominant church in the region, is analyzed in terms of its different faces, changes, and transformations from conquest and colonization through the changing winds of Vatican II to the revolutionary experiences of the popular church in the 1970s and 1980s. This work will be of interest to scholars of Latin American studies, politics, religion, culture, and sociology. It also speaks to theologians and philosophers working in Latin America.
Today, the statement that Anglicans are fond of the Fathers and keen on patristic studies looks like a platitude. Like many platitudes, it is much less obvious than one might think. Indeed, it has a long and complex history. Jean-Louis Quantin shows how, between the Reformation and the last years of the Restoration, the rationale behind the Church of England's reliance on the Fathers as authorities on doctrinal controversies, changed significantly. Elizabethan divines, exactly like their Reformed counterparts on the Continent, used the Church Fathers to vindicate the Reformation from Roman Catholic charges of novelty, but firmly rejected the authority of tradition. They stressed that, on all questions controverted, there was simply no consensus of the Fathers. Beginning with the "avant-garde conformists" of early Stuart England, the reference to antiquity became more and more prominent in the construction of a new confessional identity, in contradistinction both to Rome and to Continental Protestants, which, by 1680, may fairly be called "Anglican." English divines now gave to patristics the very highest of missions. In that late age of Christianity--so the idea ran--now that charisms had been withdrawn and miracles had ceased, the exploration of ancient texts was the only reliable route to truth. As the identity of the Church of England was thus redefined, its past was reinvented. This appeal to the Fathers boosted the self-confidence of the English clergy and helped them to surmount the crises of the 1650s and 1680s. But it also undermined the orthodoxy that it was supposed to support.
Roman Catholic church music in England served the needs of a vigorous, vibrant and multi-faceted community that grew from about 70,000 to 1.7 million people during the long nineteenth century. Contemporary literature of all kinds abounds, along with numerous collections of sheet music, some running to hundreds, occasionally even thousands, of separate pieces, many of which have since been forgotten. Apart from compositions in the latest Classical Viennese styles and their successors, much of the music performed constituted a revival or imitation of older musical genres, especially plainchant and Renaissance Polyphony. Furthermore, many pieces that had originally been intended to be performed by professional musicians for the benefit of privileged royal, aristocratic or high ecclesiastical elites were repackaged for rendition by amateurs before largely working or lower middle class congregations, many of them Irish. However, outside Catholic circles, little attention has been paid to this subject. Consequently, the achievements and widespread popularity of many composers (such as Joseph Egbert Turner, Henry George Nixon or John Richardson) within the English Catholic community have passed largely unnoticed. Worse still, much of the evidence is rapidly disappearing, partly because it no longer seems relevant to the needs of the modern Catholic Church in England. This book provides a framework of the main aspects of Catholic church music in this period, showing how and why it developed in the way it did. Dr Muir sets the music in its historical, liturgical and legal context, pointing to the ways in which the music itself can be used as evidence to throw light on the changing character of English Catholicism. As a result the book will appeal not only to scholars and students working in the field, but also to church musicians, liturgists, historians, ecclesiastics and other interested Catholic and non-Catholic parties.
Catholics of all kinds-committed, curious, questioning, and confused-will find in this slim volume resources, insights, and helpful suggestions that are sure to enrich your faith and deepen your understanding of Christ's Good News and the Church's Great Mission in the world. In this lively collection you will hear of the richness of heritage, the wisdom of teachings, and the beauty of traditions available to Catholics and people of good will everywhere. The articles in this collection by award-winning Catholic authors first appeared in the Annual VISION Vocation Guide, published by TrueQuest Communications, on behalf of the National Religious Vocation Conference.
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