By choosing to embrace organized religion, millennial Catholics set themselves apart not only from their peers but from their fellow faithful, according to 32-year-old Robert Christian, co-founder and editor of a Catholic online publication that bears his demographic’s name.
“At a time when there was a distinctly Catholic culture, individuals identified as Catholic whether or not they attended Mass regularly,” Christian said. But in the 1960s and ’70s that culture evaporated. Now many young Catholics “have made a deliberate choice to be Catholics, either as converts or reverts,” and thus espouse a devout and orthodox faith, he said.
However, reflecting their non-Catholic counterparts, millennial Catholics often are more progressive on topics of economic and social justice than their parents and grandparents, said Christian. And this historically incongruous pairing has lacked an outlet.
Enter “Millennial: Young Catholics, An Ancient Faith, A New Century,” a journal and blog that features millennial writers and eschews a Catholicism forced to fit neatly into left- or right-leaning ideological camps.
“If you are an across-the-board liberal, there are plenty of forums, both secular and Catholic, for a millennial writer to publish their thoughts, and the same is true if you are a doctrinaire conservative,” Christian said. “But if you are a pro-life progressive or a social justice conservative, your opportunities are limited.
“‘Millennial’ provides a forum for these voices — for Catholics who believe in Catholic moral and social teaching and who want to reshape their parties by making them more consistently committed to the common good, social justice and the protection of human life and dignity.”
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