Catholic Church Growing in the South
Here's an interesting article on the growth of the Catholic faith in the Protestant Southeastern US. (h/t NCR) There are many more priests in training in their seminaries proportionately than the size of their diocese compared with those in the north. Religious orders are flourishing there as well. One reason is that in the south, the Catholics are a minority and cannot take their faith for granted. Persecution and opposition historically has made the Church grow, not stagnate. In the Northern cities of the US, the majority of people were of the Catholic faith and there was no challenge or resistance to the faith. Therefore, it was easy to not have to share the faith or defend it .
"In a region where churches sit on seemingly every street corner and billboards belt out Bible verses and calls for repentance, local Catholics say they have found fertile ground for the renewal of the Church.
“Our Protestant brothers and sisters have done us a great favor. Talking about faith here in the South is like eating, breathing, and sleeping,” said Randy Hain, a managing partner at Bell Oaks Executive Search in Atlanta and co-founder of The Integrated Catholic Life, an online magazine. “There’s an openness about faith here which makes it easier to be open about your faith if you’re Catholic.”
Let's pray that this growth will spread to the North. In my diocese, the bishop had to close 1/3 of the parishes because of lack of priests and declining numbers of Catholics.We could use more priests and especially Catholics who are open to life.