ARGENTINA may have spawned the current Pope, but a new survey shows that only five out ten people believe that the money donated to the Catholic Church is used to fund worthy causes.
Instead they are convinced it’s lavished on preening prelates posing as peacocks, and other poncy personnel.
What an outrageous notion!
The poll also shows the more than half of Argentinians don’t believe it’s important to financially support the Church’s charitable works, or to maintain churches and its infrastructure, and that the money should come from its own coffers.
Catholic site Crux said:
They don’t know about the Church’s hospitals, homes for the elderly, schools, social work in the slums, and more.
Increasing donations will not be an easy task: 35 percent of the overall population believes the Church doesn’t need their money, and the number is strikingly similar among Catholics, 32 percent.
The poll shows that while seven in ten Argentinians declare themselves to be Catholic, six in ten don’t know what activities the Church is doing in the country and seven in ten attend Mass less than once a month.
The poll got around 3,000 respondees. It was commissioned by the Church in an attempt find ways of boosting personal donations, and take less from the state.
At present, the aid the Church receives in state funding amounts to ten percent of its annual budget; close to $2.5 million. Argentinian bishops announced last year their intention to gradually wean themselves off this aid because some politicians cited public funding as a reason to exclude the Church from a nationwide debate over the decriminalisation and legalisation of abortion.
Seven in ten people in Pope Francis’s home country claim they’re “little or not at all” familiar with the activities of the Catholic Church in the country, and the number goes down only slightly among Catholics to six in ten.
Better news for the Church comes in the form of two studies carried out in America and the UK. These show approval of the Church is on an upward trend.
According to data from the Saint Leo University Polling Institute, the favorable opinion – those who responded strongly and somewhat favorably – was recorded at 73.5 percent, up from 69.3 percent in November 2019. However, the Pope’s popularity has suffered a dip from 56.6 percent in November 2019 to 52.2 percent in the latest round of polling among the general population.
In the UK St Mary’s University in London released new findings on “Catholics in Britain”, which found that 59 percent of all Catholics said that Francis is doing an “excellent” or “good job” at spreading the Catholic faith. Those numbers increased to 74 percent among weekly Mass goers and to 78 percent among Mass goers under the age of thirty.
Moreover, 70 percent of British Catholics see Francis as representing a “change of direction” for the papacy, a figure that rises to 87 percent among weekly mass attendees.
On specific issues, the survey found that Francis received his least favorable results when it comes to addressing the clergy sex abuse scandals, reforming the Vatican bureaucracy, and addressing the needs and concerns of Catholic women.