About this Issue
Prize-winning author Anne M. Butler contributes our lead-article, which deals with Catholic Sisters and the American West. Drawing on years of research and with amazing detail, she demonstrates how nuns tested themselves physically, culturally, intellectually and spiritually, changed existing gender boundaries, transformed the European monastery into the American covenant, and had a major impact on the growth of Catholicism. A version of the article was the keynote address at the 2004 History of Women Religious Conference in Atchison, Kansas. We are pleased to bring it to you in our pages.
Nicole von Germeten's article deals with Peter Claver (1581-1654), "the slave of the slaves," a Spanish Jesuit who ministered to African slaves arriving in the port of Cartagena, on Columbia's Caribbean coast. He was canonized in 1888. Her article analyzes the promotion of Saint Peter Claver to African-Americans from 1868 to 1965. Her careful research through this century of Claverian bibliography is quite revealing.
Maura Hearden writes of "Catholic America's Love Affair with the Little Flower." Saint Thérèse Martin of Lisieux (1873-1897) and what Hearden calls "her positive and subtly revolutionary message of holy power available to even the littlest of souls" is placed by the author in an American Catholic historical context that helps us appreciate the saint's remarkable appeal.
Our book review section is, we feel, especially engaging, and please don't miss Raymond Bucko's cover essay and the fascinating photo captions.
We are pleased to announce that American Catholic Studies has received three awards in the 2005 competition conducted by the Catholic Press Association, including second place for General Excellence among scholarly publications. The award certificates are reproduced on the next page and contain the specific information for each award. This brings to eight the awards our journal has received in the last three years. For this we thank our authors, our manuscript readers/referees, our book reviewers, and most importantly you, our readers and sustainers.
Alert readers will note that the name of Margaret King, our very capable editorial assistant, has been replaced in this issue by that of Leigh Anne McCabe. Margaret began working with us during the transition from Records to American Catholic Studies. Much of the credit for the clear and attractive format of our pages is due to Margaret. For that and much more, we say thank you and wish her many wonderful and exciting years of retirement. We welcome Leigh Anne McCabe, who has already made evident that she will carry forward the high standards Margaret set.
Rodger Van Allen, Co-editor