In his new book, Can Francis Change the Church? How American Catholics Are Responding to His Leadership
, Fr. Thomas P. Sweetser, SJ, details how he spent seven years interviewing Catholics of all ages across the country—both practicing and non-practicing—about their relationship with the Church, talking to the same people before and after Pope Francis was elected. Touching on various hot button issues, Fr. Sweetser’s before and after interviews provide insight into how attitudes have evolved with the new papacy, offering new perspectives on how the laity is experiencing the Catholic Church at this moment in time and their desire for authentic spirituality.
Father Sweetser is the founder and current director of the Parish Evaluation Project. He has taught at the Institute of Pastoral Studies at Loyola University Chicago, the University of Dayton in Ohio, Boston College, University of Seattle, Retreats International, and Loyola University New Orleans. He is the author of numerous books, and his articles have appeared in America, National Catholic Reporter, Commonweal, Chicago Studies, Today’s Parish, Human Development, Review of Ignatian Spirituality, and Church.
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