Religion is intrinsically social, and hence irretrievably organizational, although organization is often seen as the darker side of the religious experience--power, routinization, and bureaucracy. Religion and secular organizations have long received separate scholarly scrutiny, but until nowtheir confluence has been little considered. This interdisciplinary collection of mostly unpublished papers is the first volume to remedy the deficit. The project grew out of a three-year inquiry into religious institutions undertaken by Yale University's Program on Non-Profit Organizations andsponsored by the Lilly Endowment. The scholars who took part in this effort weree challenged to apply new perspectives to the study of religious organizations, especially that strand of contemporary secular organizational theory known as "New Institutionalism." The result was this groundbreakingvolume, which includes papers on various aspects of such topics as the historical sources and patterns of U.S. religious organizations, contemporary patterns of denominational authority, the congregation as an organization, and the interface between religious and secular institutions and movements.The contributors include an interdisciplinary mix of scholars from economics, history, law, social administration, and sociology.