The Associated Press’ Eric Gorski wrote a ton of stories about the pope’s visit. One dealt with the relationship Benedict XVI has with American youth.
Of course, the late Pope John Paul II was well loved by young people and his World Youth Day events were major media events. Gorski writes a balanced story that emphasizes the growing orthodoxy among young people while not ignoring the presence of Catholic teens who struggle with church teaching:
Only 14 percent of Catholics between 20 and 40 attend Mass at least weekly, according to a study by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostate at Georgetown University. Other polls find Americans are switching religions more than ever or leaving faith altogether, with the Catholic church feeling those trends acutely.
Yet evidence also suggests a blooming of youth Catholic orthodoxy. Tradition-minded private Catholic schools like Christendom College in Virginia and Ave Maria University in Florida boast small enrollments but are growing in stature. Also growing are women’s religious orders in which sisters wear habits and perform traditional roles like teaching.
These young, devout Catholics share an appreciation for orthodox theology, self-sacrifice and fidelity to church teaching.
It’s a good story with a lot of reporting and anecdotes.
But (cough, cough) check out that first paragraph again. What’s with the Center for Applied Research in the Apostate? I think he meant Apostolate.