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The Age of Cardinals
Msgr. Michael John Witt

The third volume in a four-volume work detailing the work of Catholic missionaries in the early Midwest, and the founding and growth of Catholic institutions in Saint Louis and surrounding regions in Missouri and Illinois.

“The Age of Cardinals of Saint Louis ranged from 1903”… to 1969: John Joseph Glennon (made Archbishop in 1903, Cardinal in 1946) to Joseph Elmer Ritter (made Archbishop in 1946, Cardinal in 1961) to John Joseph Carberry (made Archbishop in 1968, Cardinal in 1969).

“Prostrate before the Pope, new cardinals take an oath of loyalty which the Holy Father prays:

“To the praise of Almighty God and the honor of His Holy See, receive the red hat, the distinctive sign of the cardinal’s dignity, by which is meant that even until death and the shedding of blood you will show yourself courageous for the exaltation of our holy Faith, for the peace and successful living of Christian people and for the growth of the Holy Roman Church. In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost.”

“But the three cardinals of Saint Louis do not tell the story of Catholic evangelization in America’s heartland. They provide a framework. Catholic evangelization was done in the twentieth century by legions of priests, nuns, brothers, and dedicated laity.”

“During the age of cardinals, two generations of young Catholics and converts were given the Gospel of Jesus Christ, were given the sacraments of the Church, and were put on the path to personal sanctification by these men and women who served under the leadership of the three cardinal-archbishops.”

“Their story through two world wars, a great depression, the struggle for civil rights, and the swirl of urbanization and suburbanization is a story of keeping the Faith and passing it on to the next generation.”

“…Saint Louis remains a mighty force in advancing Catholic evangelization.” [From the Preface]


  1. Meet Me in Saint Louie Louie
  2. The Spirit of Saint Louis
  3. Over Here, Over There
  4. Bricks and Mortar
  5. The Turbulent Twenties
  6. Fear Itself
  7. Leo’s Demons in the Twentieth Century
  8. Joseph Elmer Ritter and Changing Saint Louis
  9. The Archdiocese and Civil Rights
  10. “We Have Labored the Whole Night Long, and Have Taken Nothing”
  11. “Release Unparalleled Vital Forces”
  12. Leviathan Stirs
  13. A Third Cardinal

The Miriam Press, ©2018, Soft Cover, 396 pages