Sr. Mary Johnson, SND Discusses Young, New Face of Catholic Church at Annual Conference
March 12, 2012
Professor of Sociology and Religious Studies and Director of the Center for Mission and Spirituality Sister Mary Johnson, SND offered the keynote address at the annual Bernardin Conference held March 2nd-4th at Mundelein Seminary located outside of Chicago. The theme of this year's conference was "generational diversity."
In her address, Sister Mary presented new findings from the "American Catholic Laity Survey," conducted in May 2011, which illustrate the shift in the Church's majority population from older to younger from 1987 to today. While 25 years ago the two oldest generations made up more than 75 percent of the Catholics, today, the majority (57 percent) consists of the two youngest adult groups, the "Post-Vatican II generation" (born between 1961 and 1978) and the "Millennial generation" (born between 1979 and 1987).
The national event was sponsored by the Catholic Common Ground Initiative, a project of the Bernadin Center at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago. The conference featured a group of 40 professors, theologians, professionals and student leaders who discussed "the implications of the generational shift and ways to bridge the gaps."