Journal of Religion & Society
In this paper, we seek to draw lessons about the roles that religious institutions can play in promoting democracy in deeply divided societies by examining the experience of the Catholic Church in Latin America. We focus on the cases of Chile and El Salvador, two countries where the Catholic Church played a decisive role in advancing democracy after autocratic military rule. These two cases illustrate where theology and action productively promoted social change in highly conflictual societies. We note challenges to democracy in the region, but also new opportunities in the era of the first Latin American pope, Francis.
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Thiede, John and Carnes, Matthew, "Filling the Gaps in Civil Society The Role of the Catholic Church in Latin American Democratization" (2018). Theology Faculty Research and Publications. 753.
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