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154BOOK REVIEWS Borromeo. Known as the Scalabrini Fathers, this society was in the forefront of the Church's efforts to meet the speitual and material needs of the ItaUan immigrants in the Americas. In the days when any immigrant was looked upon with scorn—by a society not much more deferent from today's, except in technology —Scalabrini moved the Church to reach out and defend, guide and protect these poorest of the poor, with great success. Covering a period from the inception of Sclabrini's immigrant work in 1887, Dr. Brown continues her study until 1934, when important internal changes in the Society were made. Her thirteen chapters each provide insight into the developing mission of the Scalabrinians, outlining thee chaUenges faced and overcome, extoUtag thee successes,whUe not shying away from their early misfortunes.Two appendices, one with brief biographies of the persons mentioned in the text, and the other with profiles of Scalabrinian missions, round out the narrative. Dr. Brown also provides the reader with informative notes on archival and bibUographical sources, as weU as a very useful index. Dr. Brown's work is a "must" for aU interested in the work of the CathoUc Church for the ItaUan Unmigrants in the Americas. Stephen M. DiGiovanni St.John Fisher Seminary Residence Stamford, Connecticut An Unordinary Man: A Life ofFatherJohn LaFarge, SJ. By Robert A. Hecht. (Lanham, Maryland:The Scarecrow Press, Inc. 1996. Pp. xii, 287. $67.50.) John LaFarge was the youngest of the seven surviving children of the nineteenth-century American artist John LaFarge (1835-1910) and of Margaret Perry, whose ancestors included Benjamin Franklin and Oliver Hazard Perry, hero of the battle of Lake Erie in the War of 1812. Father LaFarge was born in 1880 in Newport, Rhode Island, and grew up there. Educated in the Newport public schools, he graduated from Harvard College in 1901 and that same year began theological studies at the University of Innsbruck, Austria. Since before ordination to the priesthood he had decided to enter the Society of Jesus, he was ordained, with the approval of the bishop of Providence, on the title of his "patrimony," meaning that he could provide for himseU, thus avoiding the obUgation of service to the diocese which he would normaUy have incurred. (Hecht mistaktagly says he was ordained on the title of"poverty," which is proper to religious orders.) That was on July 26, 1905, and LaFarge entered the Jesuit novitiate of St. Andrew-on-Hudson, Poughkeepsie, New York, on November 13 of that same year. For aU this information and much that follows, this book is dependent on LaFarge's autobiography, The Manner Is Ordinary (1954), from which his title also derives. LaFarge went from the novitiate to Canisius College, Buffalo, which had just been transferred from the jurisdiction of the German BOOK REVIEWS155 Jesuit province to the largely Irish-American Maryland-New York province. He stayed for a semester, then transferred to Loyola CoUege, Baltimore.After a happier semester in Baltimore he was sent to Woodstock CoUege to review his phUosophical and theological studies, but poor health soon ended any hope of higher studies, and LaFarge began a period of pastoral work that lasted from 1909 to 1926, first in the pubUc tastitutions on BlackweU's Island in NewYork's East River and then, chiefly among African Americans, in St. Mary's County, Maryland. He became a country pastor, traveling about by horse and buggy and sailing to offshore missions in small boats. Hecht, using archival correspondence , is good at pointing out the evolution of LaFarge's thought. He came with a patrician New Englander's stereotypes and prejudices about African Americans ; he came to appreciate theU humanity, thee vêtues, and thee failings in a far more sympathetic way. He had known poverty in NewYork; he found what it meant to have it made harder by racism. LaFarge's educational efforts are chronicled, notably his role in the foundation (1924) of a CathoUc black industrial arts school, the Cardinal Gibbons Institute. In 1926 a summons to join the staff oíAmerica magazine set the stage for the rest of his Ufe. He became the staff expert on interracial questions, writing...


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