By Mary L. Mapes
Using Indianapolis as its concentration, this publication explores the connection among faith and social welfare. coming up out of the Indianapolis Polis Center’s Lilly-sponsored research of faith and concrete tradition, the publication appears at 3 matters: the position of non secular social prone inside Indianapolis’s greater social welfare aid method, either private and non-private; the evolution of the connection among private and non-private welfare sectors; and the way principles approximately citizenship mediated the supply of social prone. Noting that spiritual nonprofits don't determine prominently in so much reviews of welfare, Mapes explores the old roots of the connection among religiously affiliated social welfare and public firms. Her procedure acknowledges that neighborhood version has been a defining characteristic of yankee social welfare. A Public Charity goals to light up neighborhood tendencies and to narrate the placement in Indianapolis to nationwide traits and events.
Polis middle sequence on faith and concrete Culture—David J. Bodenhamer and Arthur E. Farnsley II, editors
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Extra resources for A Public Charity: Religion And Social Welfare In Indianapolis, 1929-2002 (Polis Center Series on Religion and Urban Culture)
While secular social work professionals worked hard to spread the message that private agencies should serve the entire community, many mainline Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish social agencies began to speak the same language and offer similar services. Although these religious social welfare agencies still maintained their traditional concern for the poor—and in the case of Catholic Charities still received public funds—they nevertheless were attracted to the mantle of respect and authority that the new psychologically based social welfare work represented, and they sought to expand their clientele by attending to the social and psychological needs of the middle class.
Although the conservative political sentiment in Indianapolis resisted such notions, Fussenegger brought these messages back home. ’’21 Although some Indianapolis Catholics—including Bishop Joseph Ritter—remained skeptical about the New Deal, others soon understood social welfare as a public responsibility. ’’24 Thus, the men and women at Catholic Charities in Indianapolis increasingly came to the conclusion that public social welfare programs were not only necessary but that they fit with Catholic ideals enunciated in papal encyclicals Rerum novarum () and Quadragesimo anno () and applied to the American context by the likes of Fathers Ryan, McGowan, and Fussenegger.
The Church Federation supported what it called a model of ‘‘Christian Family Living’’ that openly and explicitly celebrated traditional gender roles and relations. As a result, the men and women who worked for the Social Service Department rarely took the issue of class seriously and focused without any qualms on serving the middle class. The heightened attention on the middle class was not merely rhetorical. It directly and profoundly affected the services offered. Certainly throughout the late s and early s, most of the city’s private agencies expended a large proportion of their resources on assistance to the poor.