Notre Dame Study of Catholic Parish Life: Parishioners Sample, 1984

Data Archive > U.S. Surveys > Religious Groups > Members or Leaders > Catholic > Summary


The Notre Dame Study of Catholic Parish Life attempts to describe Catholic parishes in the United States roughly twenty years after the reforms of the Second Vatican Council. Beyond the broad descriptive sample of all U.S. parishes, its contextual sampling design permits the scholar to examine both laity, and ordained and non-ordained leadership in various types of parishes. It yields data on participation and organizational involvement, styles of religiosity, church-related attitudes, civic involvement and sociopolitical attitudes, organizational designs and decision-making, and liturgical experience and satisfaction. This is the parishioner component within the series of studies.

"This comprehensive study was an attempt to understand contemporary parish life and the attitudes and behaviors of presumably the most active Catholics, namely, registered parishioners. (Leege and Welch 1989:143).

Data File
Cases: 2,667
Variables: 499
Weight Variable: None
Data Collection
Date Collected: October 1983 to January 1984
Funded By
The Lilly Endowment, Inc.
Collection Procedures
"Multiple-wave mail-outs of self-administered questionnaires yielded 2,667 responding parishioners (usable response rate of approximately 60%)" (Leege and Welch 1989:143-144).
Sampling Procedures
"A complex multistage, stratified sampling design was used to select non-Hispanic parishioners from thirty-six representative, non-Hispanic parishes across the United States...Because of vastly different styles of religiosity, language problems, and cultural differences among Hispanic groups, we took conscious steps to exclude Hispanic parishes and parishioners from the sample" (Leege and Welch 1989:143).


"Black parishioners were oversampled because we had reason to believe the response rate for this subpopulation might be intolerably low. To compensate for this procedure, we re-weighted the sample to correspond to the best estimates of regional and national proportions of black Catholics (estimates derived from Harfmann, 1985). Comparisons were then made between distributions on selected variables for the unweighted and weighted samples, but on no variables were there significant differences in parameters" (Leege and Welch 1989:144).
Principal Investigators
Phillip Murnion and Michael R. Welch
Related Publications
Leege, David C. and Michael R. Welch. 1989. "Religious Roots of Political Orientations: Variations Among American Catholic Parishioners," Journal of Politics 51:137-162.

Byers, Dave, ed. 1986. The Parish in Transition: Proceedings of a Conference on the American Catholic Parish. Washington, D.C.: United States Catholic Conference.

Castelli, Jim and Joseph Gremillion. 1987. The Emerging Parish: The Notre Dame Study of Catholic Parish Life Since Vatican II. San Francisco: Harper & Row.

Dolan, Jay P. 1987. The American Catholic Parish: A History from 1850 to the Present. New York: Paulist Press.

Dolan, Jay P., Scott Appleby, Patricia Byrne, and Debra Campbell. 1989. Transforming Parish Ministry: The Changing Roles of Catholic Clergy, Laity, and Women Religious. New York: Crossroad.
Occupation Codes
0 No Spouse
1 Accountant
2 Architect
3 Computer Programmer
4 Systems Analyst
5 Computer Specialist
6 Aeronautical Engineer
10 Chemical Engineer
11 Civil Engineer
12 Electrical Engineer
13 Industrial Engineer
14 Mechanical Engineer
15 Metallurgical Engineer
20 Mining Engineer
21 Petroleum Engineer
22 Sales Engineer
23 Engineer Unspecified
24 Farm Advisor
25 Forester
26 Home Management Advisor
30 Judge
31 Lawyer
32 Librarian
33 Curator, Archivist
34 Actuary
35 Mathematician
36 Statistician
42 Agriculture Scientist
43 Meteorologist
44 Biologist
45 Chemist
51 Geologist
52 Marine Scientist
53 Physicist
54 Natural Scientist
55 Operations Analyst
56 Personnel Worker
61 Chiropractor
62 Dentist
63 Optometrist
64 Pharmacist
65 Physician
71 Podiatrist
72 Veterinarian
73 Health Practitioner
74 Dietician
75 Registered Nurse
76 Therapist
80 Lab Technician
81 Dental Hygienist
82 Health Record Tech
83 Radiologist
84 Therapy Assistant
85 Health Technician
86 Clergyman
90 Religious Workers
91 Economist
92 Political Scientist
93 Psychologist
94 Sociologist
95 Urban Planner
96 Social Scientist
100 Social Worker
101 Recreation Worker
102 Agriculture Professor
103 Geology Professor
104 Biology Professor
105 Chemistry Professor
110 Physics Professor
111 Engineer Professor
112 Math Professor
113 Health Professor
114 Psychology Professor
115 Business Professor
116 Economics Professor
120 History Professor
121 Sociology Professor
122 Social Scientist Professor
123 Fine Arts Professor
124 Phys Ed Professor
125 Education Professor
126 English Professor
130 Modern Language Professor
131 Home Economics Professor
132 Law Professor
133 Theology Professor
134 Industrial Professor
135 Miscellaneous Professor
140 Professor Unspecified
141 Adult Ed Teacher
142 Elementary School Teacher
143 Kindergarten Teacher
144 High School Teacher
145 Unspecified Teacher
150 Life Science Technician
151 Chemical Technician
152 Draftsman
153 Electronic Technician
154 Industrial Engineering Technician
161 Surveyor
162 Engineer Technician
163 Airplane Pilot
164 Air Traffic Control
173 Technician Unspecified
174 Vocational Counselor
182 Dancer
183 Designer
184 Reporter
185 Musician
190 Artist
191 Photographer
192 Public Relations
193 Radio/TV Announcer
194 Writer
195 Research Worker
196 Professional Worker
201 Assessor
202 Bank Officer
205 Wholesale Buyer
210 Creditor
211 Funeral Director
212 Health Administrator
213 Construction Inspector
215 Other Inspector
216 Building Manager
220 Office Manager
221 Ship Officers
222 Public Administrator
223 Union Official
224 Postmaster
225 Purchasing Agent
226 Railroad Conductor
230 Restaurant Manager
231 Sales Manager
233 Other Sales Manager
235 University Administrator
240 High School Administrator
245 Administrator
246 Manager, Ex Farm
260 Advertising Agent
261 Auctioneer
262 Demonstrator
265 Insurance Agent
266 Newsboy
270 Real Estate Agent
271 Stock Broker
280 Sales Clerk
281 Sales Representative
282 Wholesale Trader
283 Retail Clerk
284 Salesman
285 Service Salesman
296 Sales Worker
301 Bank Teller
303 Billing Clerk
305 Bookkeeper
310 Cashier
311 Clerical Assistant
312 Clerical Supervisor
313 Collector
314 Counter Clerk
315 Dispatcher
320 Investigator
321 Estimator
323 Expeditor
325 File Clerk
326 Insurance Adjuster
330 Library Attendant
331 Mail Carrier
332 Mail Handler
333 Messenger
334 Meter Reader
343 Computer Operator
345 Keypunch Operator
355 Office Machine Op
360 Payroll Clerk
361 Postal Clerk
364 Receptionist
370 Legal Secretary
371 Medical Secretary
372 Other Secretary
374 Shipping Clerk
375 Statistical Clerk
376 Stenographer
381 Stock Clerk
382 Teacher Aide
383 Telegraph Messenger
384 Telegraph Operator
385 Telephone Operator
390 Ticket Agent
391 Typist
392 Weigher
394 Miscellaneous Clerical Worker
395 Unspecified Clerical Worker
396 Clerical Workers
401 Automobile Installer
402 Baker
403 Blacksmith
404 Boilermaker
405 Bookbinder
410 Brickmason
411 Brickmason, Apprentice
412 Bulldozer Operator
413 Cabinetmaker
415 Carpenter
420 Carpet Installer
421 Cement Finisher
424 Cranesman
425 Decorator
430 Electrician
431 Electrician Apprentice
433 Power Lineman
435 Engraver
436 Road Grader
441 Foreman
442 Forgeman
443 Wood Finisher
444 Furrier
445 Glazier
446 Temperer
450 Lumber Inspector
452 Other Inspector
453 Jeweler
455 Locomotive Engineer
461 Machinist
470 Refrigeration Mechanic
471 Aircraft Mechanic
472 Auto Body Repairman
473 Auto mechanic
475 Data Process Mechanic
481 Diesel Mechanic
482 Appliance Installer
484 Office Mach Mechanic
485 Radio/TV Mechanic
486 Railroad Mechanic
491 Other Mechanic
492 Miscellaneous Mechanic
495 Repairman
501 Miller
503 Molder
505 Picture Projector
506 Optician
510 Painter
522 Plumber
525 Power Operator
530 Pressman
533 Roller
534 Roofer
535 Tinsmith
542 Shoe Repairman
543 Sign Painter
550 Metal Craftsman
552 Telephone Installer
554 Telephone Lineman
561 Tool & Die Maker
575 Craftsman
580 Former Armed Forces
586 Allocated Craftsman
590 Armed Forces Member
601 Insulator
602 Assembler
603 Blaster
604 Bottler/Canner
610 Checker
612 Cutter
613 Seamstress
614 Earth Driller
621 Polisher
622 Furnaceman
623 Gas Attendant
624 Sorter
625 Packers
630 Dry Cleaner
631 Butcher
633 Meat Cutter
634 Meat Wrapper
636 Milliner
640 Mine Operative
641 Mixing Operative
643 Other Packers
644 Manufacturing Painter
650 Drill Press Operator
652 Lathe Operative
653 Machine Operative
656 Stamper
663 Stitchers
664 Shoemaker
671 Knitter
672 Spinner
673 Weaver
674 Textile Operative
680 Welder
681 Winding Operative
690 Miscellaneous Machiners
692 Machine Operator
694 Miscellaneous Operatives
695 Unspecified Operatives
696 Operatives
701 Boatman
703 Bus Driver
704 Motorman
705 Deliveryman
706 Forklift Operator
712 Railroad Brakeman
713 Railroad Switchman
714 Taxicab Driver
715 Truck Driver
726 Other Transport
740 Animal Caretaker
751 Construction Labor
753 Freight Handler
754 Garbage Collector
755 Landscaper/Gardener
760 Longshoreman
761 Lumberman
762 Stockhandler
770 Warehouseman
780 Miscellaneous Laborer
785 Unspecified Laborer
796 Laborer
801 Farmer
802 Corp Farm manager
806 Farmer/Manager
821 Farm Foreman
822 Farm Laborer
823 Farm Family Worker
846 Other Farm Worker
864 Farm Operative
888 Not Applicable
901 Hotel Maids
902 Cleaners
903 Janitors
910 Bartender
912 Cook
914 Food Counter Worker
915 Waiter
916 Food Service Worker
921 Dental Assistant
922 Health Aide
925 Nursing Aide
926 Practical Nurse
932 Recreation Attendant
935 Barber
942 Child Care Worker
944 Hairdresser
950 Housekeeper
960 Crossing Guard
961 Fireman
962 Guard
964 Policeman
965 Sheriff
976 Service Workers
980 Private Child Care
981 Private Cook
982 Private Housekeeper
984 Private Maid
986 Private Workers
990 Student, Homemaker, Unemployed