An account of the life, work and message of Reverend Charles E. Coughlin, 1933


Ruth Mugglebee, biography of Charles Coughlin, 1933

A second, highly hagiographical, biography of Father Coughlin was published in 1932. This excerpt describes Coughlin's education and early career, detailing especially the oratorical prowess and reputation with his peers and teachers that supposedly foreshadowed his later popularity. The author also dwells on Coughlin's initial attraction to the social teachings of Leo XIII and his devotion to the pursuit of philosophical truth.



As you read the document, reflect on the following questions:

  • What did Coughlin's early followers think of him and his radio ministry? How does this document illustrate this perspective?
  • Mugglebee relates an incident from Coughlin's college days: he gave a improvised speech on "The Beauty of God" in which he sacrificed consistency for dramatic effect. Why do you think this anecdote was included? What does it tell us about Coughlin's personality?