Award-winning religion journalist David Gibson presents a startlingly clear-eyed look at the impact of the sexual abuse scandals on the Catholic Church and how they have set off a revolution from below that is galvanizing North America's rank-and-file Catholics to bring positive changes to their Church.The Catholic Church is at a crossroad. People on all sides are demanding change, but few are sure how that change can happen. Recent history suggests a powerful minority will block any reforms.In this sweeping assessment of where the Church has been, and where it is going, David Gibson uses his insider's knowledge and sources to reveal the forces that are already transforming Catholicism -- from the laity to the besieged priesthood to the papacy itself. Laypeople, especially women, are taking larger roles in Church life as the number of priests continues to decline. Priests are redefining their calling as scandals and shortages spark changes not seen in a thousand years, including new openings for married priests. Bishops, under fire from every quarter, are struggling to reimagine how the Church can be governed, while the College of Cardinals are waging an intense -- and increasingly public -- debate over how the next papacy will be different from the current one.The Catholic Church is always changing, but today the need for immediate reforms is more urgent than ever as Catholicism seeks to remain vital to American life and faithful to its authentic mission of following Jesus. In The Coming Catholic Church David Gibson examines the disputes that have polarized Catholicism and focuses on the new forces that are currently bringing Catholics together. From Church governance at the parish level and the selection of bishops to the way Catholics now view the rule of Rome, Gibson explains the transformations coming through both a revolution from below and an impending change at the top of the Church. This book is an expression of the heartfelt feelings and aspirations of all Catholics, from the people in the pew to the priests in the pulpit, as they struggle to renew their faith and their Church.