congestive heart failure

By Diogenes (articles) | May 02, 2008

The current NCR features a review of a new book on the history of the American Jesuits:

Fr. Schroth, a Jesuit himself and a familiar NCR contributor, proceeds chronologically with 15 chapters spread across four sections. Founded in 1534, recognized by papal bull in 1540, the Society sent missionaries from Rome to North America and around the world. The Society's European origins provide spiritual and historical foundations for its American expansion in the 19th and 20th centuries. The final chapter includes a sobering assessment of the Jesuits' graying (median age 67.6 years) and dwindling membership. Fr. Schroth suggests the U.S. order might have only 1,100 members by 2050, down from 8,338 in 1960. Before that, though, comes a rollicking good story.

So what made it rollick? More to the point, perhaps, what made it stop?

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