This article contributes to the growing body of work on the impact of religious institutions on the identities and experiences of new immigrants from the Caribbean, Latin America, and Asia. Drawing from ethnographic research on Haitian immigrants in Boston, I find a relationship between initial residential settlement patterns and the location of Catholic churches. Following Gerald Gamm's Urban Exodus: Why Jews Left Boston and the Catholics Stayed, I argue that Haitian immigrants who arrived in Boston in the 1960s were attracted to certain neighborhoods despite the racial climate because they were Catholic. In addition to the influence of rules governing membership and religious authority, I show that Haitians turned to a Catholic narrative of their experience in Boston because being Catholic was the most acceptable way of being Haitian in that social context.
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