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Understanding the Consecrated Life in Canada

Critical Essays on Contemporary Trends

Edited by Jason Zuidema
Subjects Religion, Spirituality
Series Editions SR Hide Details
Hardcover : 9781771121378, 400 pages, December 2015
Ebook (EPUB) : 9781771121392, 400 pages, December 2015
Ebook (PDF) : 9781771121385, 400 pages, December 2015

Table of contents

Table of Contents for Understanding the Consecrated Life in Canada: Critical Essays on Contemporary Trends, edited by Jason Zuidema
Part I: Numbers and Definition
1. Introduction: Living the Consecrated Life in Canada | Jason Zuidema
2. Le nombre de religieux au Québec : pourquoi est-il monté aussi haut avant 1960 et descendu aussi bas après 1965? | Guy Laperrière
3. Catholic Consecrated Life in Canada: A Statistical Overview | Kathryn Rose Sawyer with Jason Zuidema
4. Le monachisme dans l'çglise et la société : une perspective de sociologie historique | Paul-André Turcotte, c.s.v.
5. La vie religieuse au Québec : une place à trouver et une identité à repenser | Gilles Routhier
Part II: Catholic Religious: Retrospect and Development
6. The Local Bishop in the Renewal of Religious Life After Vatican II: G. Emmett Carter and the Precious Blood Sisters in the Diocese of London, Ontario | Michael Attridge
7. The Canadian Province of the Religieuses de Notre Dame des Missions: The Horizon Reference and Reception of Vatican II, Moving Toward a New Constellation of Meanings | Rosa Bruno-Jofré
8. Experiencing Vatican II: Oral Histories of Women Religious Recalling Change, Challenges, and Creative Solutions | Elizabeth Smyth and Patricia Kmeic
9. Avoiding and Exaggerating Renewal: Maritime Catholic Newspapers' Reporting on Women Religious, 1962-1975 | Heidi MacDonald and Emily Burton
10. “All Things Pass But Love Remains”: The Closing Decades of a Religious Community | Elizabeth W. McGahan
11. La Conférence Religieuse Canadienne (CRC) : 60 ans au service des communautés religieuses | Yvon Pomerleau, o.p.
Part III: Religious in Christian Traditions: Contemporary Trends
12. Un projet tissé d'espérance et ouvert à la nouveauté : La vie consacrée contemporaine à travers un périodique catholique francophone, la revue En Son Nom (2003-2012) | Dominique Laperle
13. Entre tradition et innovation : nouveaux instituts, communautés nouvelles et nouvelles formes de vie consacrée au Canada | Rick van Lier, o.p.
14. Les instituts séculiers : nouveaux espoirs et nouveaux défis | Gabrielle Lachance
15. New Monasticism among Evangelical Protestants | Martha Elias Downey
16. Canadian Catholic Religious Orders and the Social Economy Movement in Canada | Robert McKeon
17. “A Prey to History”: The Decline of Religious in Canada 1959-1988 | Darren J. Dias
18. Standing on Holy Ground: Benedict, Francis, and Monastic Environmentalism | Cory Andrew Labrecque
19. Les causes de canonisation, porteuses de mémoire des communautés | Claude Auger
Part IV: Other Religious Traditions: Contemporary Trends
20. Buddhist and Other Monasticisms in Canada | Victor Sōgen Hori
21. The Thai Buddhist Forest Tradition in Ontario | Julia Stenzel
22. The Avatamsaka Sagely Monastery and New Perspectives on Globalized Buddhism in Canada | Lina Verchery
23. Buddhist Meditation and the Consecrated Life: The Sītavana Birken Forest Monastery | Yunchange (Jack) Liu
24. Cultivating the Life of Divinity: The Consecrated Lifestyle of the Sri Chinmoy Centres of Canada | Michelle Rebidoux
25. Renouncing the World to Get Engaged? Gampo Abbey and the Role of Monasticism in a Lay Buddhist Movement | Barbara Clayton
26. Changing Perceptions of Monasticism within Ontario Khmer and Lao Buddhist Communities | Janet McLellan and Marybeth White


The story of the consecrated life in Canada since the 1960s should be about much more than numerical decline. Although the falling numbers are significant among Catholic religious in communities that pre-date Vatican II, many communities continue to show stability and even growth. This book provides nuance to that story by adding detailed portraits of movements, communities and institutions. In four parts, this book presents essays from the leading scholars on religious life in Canada that seek to address the state of religious communities dedicated to religious virtuosity normally characterized by formal promises of chastity, poverty, and obedience. The essays examine a broad range of topics related to the general state of consecrated (or “religious” or “monastic”) life in contemporary Canadian Christian and Buddhist traditions. In the first section, the contributors trace the demographics and definitions of religious life in Canada. The second section examines Canadian developments in Catholic religious life during the Vatican II and the post-Vatican II eras. A third section explores trends in contemporary Canadian religious life, while the fourth section describes the consecrated life in other Canadian religious traditions.


It is an important contribution to the scholarly literature about religious communities in Canada, and more broadly, to the academic discussion of secularization in postwar Canada ... Recent scholarship, both Canadian and international, has emphasized that secularization is not a neat, linear process, with predetermined, inevitable conclusions. The studies contained in Understanding the Consecrated Life support this more nuanced, critical understanding of secularization

- Bruce Douville, Algoma University, Church History and Religious Culture 97 (2017)