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Yearbook Of American And Canadian Churches 2000
America's Growing Theme is "Religious Pluralism"

Yearbook: A Valuable Resource
"Religious Pluralism: America In The Year 2000"

February 18, 2000, NEW YORK CITY – America’s growing religious pluralism is the theme of the Year 2000 Yearbook of American and Canadian Churches, prepared by the National Council of Churches.

"At the close of what has broadly been known as the ‘Christian Century,’ we felt it was important for the Yearbook to step back and look at the broader religious landscape of the United States," said the Rev. Dr. Eileen W. Lindner, Editor. "In doing so, our growing religious pluralism came boldly into focus."

As always throughout its 68-year history, the Year 2000 Yearbook is brimming with statistical data and organizational contacts invaluable to those who wish to explore Christian institutional life. "But a serious gap appeared in relation to other faith groups in America," Dr. Lindner noted. "In service to our readers we sought to fill that gap in ways that are sensitive to the faith traditions and organizational realities of others."

Thus, while the churches of America remain the focus, the Yearbook’s value as a source for both research on and engagement with a diversity of faith communities has been enhanced greatly with inclusion of:

A directory of eight "non-Christian" faith traditions in America (Baha’ism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Judaism, Native American Traditional Spirituality, Sikhism). A Yearbook "first," the directory includes a brief history and description of each along with contacts within each religious community.

A theme article, "Religious Pluralism: America in the Year 2000," by Dr. Diana L. Eck, Professor of Comparative Religion and Indian Studies at Harvard University.

Inclusion in the Yearbook’s "Index of Select Programs for U.S. Regional and Local Ecumenical Bodies" a list of agencies that programmatically address issues of interfaith relations. Comments Dr. Lindner, "The evidence of the persistence of religious pluralism can be measured in part by the increasing numbers of ecumenical agencies that are engaged in active programs of interfaith dialogue and relationships."

Infusion of other interfaith contacts, to be found in "National U.S. and Canadian Cooperative Organizations," "The Emerging Electronic Church," "Sources of Religion-Related Research" and "U.S. and Canadian Regional and Local Ecumenical Bodies."

Maps of Islamic mosques and centers and of Buddhist temples and churches in the United States, drawn from the forthcoming The New Historical Atlas of Religion in America (Oxford University Press). By Edwin Scott Gaustad and Philip L. Barlow, the atlas graphically illustrates America’s growing religious pluralism.

In addition, the "Year 2000-2003 Calendar" includes holy days of several faiths.

"As acknowledged diversity yields to the impulses of relationship and dialogue," Dr. Lindner said, "we hope that the material gathered in this millennial edition of the Yearbook will serve as a timely and useful guide through the unfamiliar and sometimes confusing terrain of religious pluralism."

The Year 2000 Yearbook of American and Canadian Churches may be ordered by e-mail (; phone (888-870-3325); fax (212-870-2817); or mail (Yearbook Orders, National Council of Churches, Room 880, 475 Riverside Drive, New York, NY 10115). Cost is $40 including shipping.


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