Catholicism and contemporary Christian music haven't always mixed well. Some Roman Catholics have questioned whether they should listen to artists whose songs reflect their faith but not their denomination. Likewise, Christian radio and bookstores weren't always sure what to do with artists like Kathy Troccoli and Margaret Becker, who might have been more Catholic than the predominantly Protestant CCM genre felt comfortable with. But the times, they are a-changin'.
Now, Audrey Assad and Matt Maher are leading a new movement of outspoken Catholic artists making their mark on the CCM genre. They join Sarah Hart, John Michael Talbot, Chris Bray and others. Then there are artists like Rich Mullins, who was raised a Quaker but was exploring Catholicism prior to his tragic death in 1997, and was a definite fan of liturgy. Others make the list by association: Francesca Battistelli, Jaci Velasquez, Tenth Avenue North and Chris Tomlin don't define themselves as Catholic, but they share the mantle thanks to either a Catholic upbringing or a history of collaborating with their Catholic counterparts, prompting some to ask, "Are they are aren't they?" Enjoy.