Congress session: Contemporary Myths About Catholics and Their Church (James Davidson)

As I said in my first post on Congress, there is a wide variety of sessions at Congress, something for everyone.  The trick is making sure you pick the right ones!

This was NOT the right one…

The topic was about demographics of the US Church but with an emphasis on the misperceptions that people have about the US Church.  To this end, Mr. Davidson (who wasn’t the best speaker to begin with), displayed a list of 10 myths that he intended to debunk.  I knew I was in trouble as soon as I read it.  Fully half of the myths I disagreed with being myths.

Additionally, while some of the statistics he quoted may have been interesting in their own right, most of them were VERY poorly applied.  I wish I could remember a specific example but my brain has done me a favor and specifically blocked out most of the session at this point.  The one thing I particularly member was his inconsistency in providing trend data for trend based “myths” and his use of trend based data for time static “myths”.  It might have been that he was trying to use the most “shocking” statistics and really had far more data that he didn’t share, but based on what he presented there was absolutely ZERO logical consistency to the numbers presented.

So my takeaway from this session was simple: don’t EVER go see James Davidson again.

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