The Democratization Of American Christianity

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It is with his first few sentences that author, Nathan Hatch, lets the readers know about the scope and the reason for his book The Democratization of American Christianity. Nathan Hatch, who is currently the president of Wake Forest University in Wake Forest, NC and was previously the dean and provost at Notre Dame, states, “This book is about the cultural and religious history of the early American republic and the enduring structures of American Christianity. It argues both that the theme of democratization is central to understanding the development of American Christianity, and that the years of the early republic are the most crucial in revealing that process.” (3) The freedom and liberty that were experienced by people in America’s infancy bled into all aspects of life: government, family, and religion. It was this freedom that gave many in the church the boldness to either go and start churches, or serve as a leader in the church: things that were not an option during their time in England. A great deal of church growth in early America can be attributed to this freedom and the conversion of the masses to the various denominations that were available to the early Americans, choices that they did not have while in England. In telling the story of the growth of Protestantism in America, Hatch regales the readers with stories and information about a fascinating time in the history of the American Protestantism. It was a time filled with such varied and unique
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