Reasons to Hope

A reader writes:

An interesting factoid from George Barna’s website. He is the evangelical guru of statistics and is constantly conducting surveys regarding issues that are of importance to Christians. He’s deeply evangelical in his understanding of Christianity but usually tries to give Catholics a fair shake. He did his latest survey on the response of Catholics to the current scandal.

“However, the survey also shows that most other indicators have remained relatively stable since the scandal has become public. Measures concerning Catholics’ self-identification with the Roman Catholic Church, the importance of their religious faith, their personal commitment to Jesus Christ, the incidence of Bible reading, prayer, church volunteerism and small group involvement are virtually unchanged compared to January’s figures.

Perhaps the most surprising change has been a seven percentage point rise in church attendance among Catholics since January – including a 10-point increase among Catholics who have children under 18 living in their home. (About four out of every ten Catholic adults lives in a household with one or more children under 18 years of age.) Catholics who do not have children under 18 experienced a smaller increase since January (five points). Even when compared to church attendance levels of a year earlier, to allow for seasonal variations, there has been a jump of six points among all Catholics in church attendance since a year ago.”

“When I am lifted up I will draw all men to me.” Strange how the Church, in its crucifixion with Christ at the hands of sinful members is still so attractive.


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