Religion and the Rural Church

  • Donald R. Whyte

Abstract

Religion in the early years of Canadian history was rural. Like the other major institutions, there were few if any rural-urban differences. The church was second only to the family in offering security and assurance to an uncertain populace in an alien and sometimes hostile environment. This fact is especially evident when we read the history of the settlement of New France. Although its settlement was initially under the administration of the regionally appointed seigniors, “most of them failed in their rural obligations and contented themselves with holding offices in the local government”.1 Consequently, the affairs of settlement and the fate of the seigniors’ settlers were soon assumed by the curé of the parish.2 From the very beginning, the curé was, and to a considerable extent has continued to be, “the natural protector and the natural representative” of the habitant in French Canada.3

Keywords

Migration Manifold Resi Univer Dian 

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Notes

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    This statement is in opposition to Cox’s recently publicized thesis that secularization has its roots in Biblical doctrine and the Christian heritage. While Cox’s analysis is both insightful and scholarly, it is primarily a call for a new interpretation of modern trends, on the part of Christians. See Harvey Cox, The Secular City (New York: The Macmillan Company, 1965).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Macmillan Company of Canada Limited 1968

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald R. Whyte

There are no affiliations available

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