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Poll: Young Catholics Anti-Abortion, Pro-Pluralism

posted by mconsoli

(RNS) Young American Catholics largely support their church’s teachings against abortion and euthanasia, while taking a relativistic attitude to religion and morality in general, according to a new poll.
According to a poll released on Thursday (Feb. 11), two thirds (66
percent) of Catholic “millennials” (aged 18-29) say that abortion is morally wrong, while 63 percent say the same of euthanasia. The poll was conducted by Marist College Institute for Public Opinion and commissioned by the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic fraternal organization.
Some of the survey results indicate a strong sense of religious identity among the respondents. Eighty percent told pollsters that religion is at least “somewhat important” in their lives, and nearly two-thirds (65 percent) described themselves as very or somewhat interested in learning more about their faith.
“The church has a great opportunity to evangelize, and has much to build on with the next generation of Catholics,” observed Carl Anderson, head of the Knights of Columbus.
But Anderson said the poll also provides evidence of the “cultural relativism that Pope Benedict XVI has spoken so much about.”
Nearly two in three young Catholics described themselves as more “spiritual” than “religious.”
More than 80 percent said they see morals as “relative,” while 61 percent said it is acceptable for a Catholic to practice more than one religion.
– Francis X. Rocca



  • pagansister

    Their opinion on abortion is their right to believe…this is America. However their church doesn’t have the right to try and change the laws as they stand in this country.
    And as to the last 2 paragraphs? Those kids are “thinking” Catholics!

  • Lynne Monds

    This poll shows young Catholics are right in step with Cardinal Walter Kasper’s call for an Ecumenical Catechism, “that identifies, reinforces and deepens the common foundation” of Christianity. This is uncharted waters for the Vatican, acknowledging there might be a path of salvation through the “Reformist” churches, such as the Lutheran and Anglican communions, which denied The Church its exclusive title to theological truth. It’s taken over 500 years for Christianity to get to this place, and I think young Catholics are among those driving this much needed change. I think a true Reformation is now imminent.

  • Brit

    Totally agree pagansister :)

  • cknuck

    the church is people and people have the right to change the law. Contrary to the propaganda some folks try to promote the church is not some mystical beast it is American people who have a voice.

  • pagansister

    “Contrary to the propaganda some folks to promote the church is not some mystical beast”. Not because Rome hasn’t tried.

  • nnmns

    I also agree with your comments ps.
    But cknuck some here would say they don’t have the right to change the Church, just to go along or leave. Which of course is tough for those who were brought up to believe there is a Hell and you only avoid it by means of the RCC.

  • nnmns

    I sincerely hope that many of these younger Catholics who find abortion morally wrong realize that’s their opinion, which should not be imposed on women and families who may believe differently and need an abortion.
    And I hope it occurs to them that sometime they or a loved one may need an abortion; historically Catholics have had abortions at relatively high rates.

  • cknuck

    Historically all Americans have abortions at alarmingly high rates.

  • nnmns

    Yep, sometimes they are needed. Especially by those denied real contraception.

  • pagansister

    Americans have a lower rate of abortions than China and Russia, cknuck. We’re not setting any records. (which is good).

  • cknuck

    over a million abortions is not good pagan

  • nnmns

    We do need far more real sex education and availability of contraceptives, and we need both men and women to think about the consequences of having unprotected sex.
    And there needs to be more consequences for men.

  • pagansister

    Never said any amount of abortions were good..cknuck. Merely pointed out that the US doesn’t lead the world as you would have us believe. Would that they were never necessary, but they sometimes are.
    Most certainly agree with your statements, nnmns.

  • Henrietta22

    Every week in our local paper there is another baby or toddler either beaten up or killed by one or the other person who helped procreate it. I’m sure that you will find this all through America. We should be emphasizing mental health, and relationships between genders on how to handle emotions, sex, etc. and stop emphasizing on abortions that should be handled by individuals for their unique personal choices they have to face. We have some very dysfunctional people having children for wrong reasons, and the little ones are dying because of it. Be outraged about this problem, because it is here among us, not an embryo that has not grown into a person yet. If abortion was abolished we would have more abused and killed babies than we have right now.

  • pagansister

    Excellent point, Henrietta. It’s easy to procreate…not so easy raising a child.

  • cknuck

    Pagan we had that conversation before and I conceded to the facts you presented concerning which country preformed the most abortions. I was careful not to reference comparisons this time so unless you just want to review or gloat I see no value in pursuing this line. However here is a tidbit for you. The Roman pagan government approved practice valued children so little abortions after birth used to be the norm, and it was common practice to sell children to brothels. Little boys would work in the brothels until they started growing facial hair and little girls until they loss their looks. This was a pagan practice until Christianity pointed out though the teachings of Jesus how He placed children in high regard as he admonished the disciples as recorded in both Matthew and Luke, “But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”

  • nnmns

    Any society that would allow children to be treated like that is no good.
    But killing a child after it’s naturally born isn’t abortion, it’s murder. I’d have thought you knew that.
    Now I’d be interested in documentation on how widespread this was and on to what extent it decreased when the roman empire became Christian.

  • pagansister

    Yes, cknuck, we have had this discussion before. No gloating, just facts.
    As to Rome and it’s practices…I wasn’t around then. Honest! Rome doesn’t necessarily represent all Pagan practices. As nnmns pointed out, it’s murder if the child is killed AFTER birth. Just because I’m of a different belief system doesn’t mean that I approve of past practices, any more than I expect you would approve of some past Christian practices. Some of them were rather brutal too! Naturally mistreating/killing children should never happen. What is unfortunate is that it is still going on…in many parts of the world…child labor, child slaves, girls are still sold into prostitution (and maybe boys too) etc. Male children are more highly regarded in many cultures so the girls are either abandon (on trash heaps…I taught an adopted Chinese girl who had been rescued from a trash heap) or killed after birth. If the parents know that the fetus is a girl before birth, better abort than kill the baby afterwards, IMO. By pointing out those Roman Pagan practices really points out that with all the Christianity in this world…in some ways, not much has changed, has it, cknuck?

  • cknuck

    abortion is murder nnmns, if you understand life, you would understand the fact that ending life is ending life.

  • nnmns

    No, cknuck. Abortion is killing a blastocyst, zygote, embryo or fetus. And as you go toward birth you come closer to a human. And it’s humans who can be murdered. It’s bzefs that can be aborted.

  • cknuck

    I imagine you nnmns putting your fingers in your ears dancing around shouting over and over “Abortion is killing a blastocyst, zygote, embryo or fetus.” “It’s bzefs that can be aborted.” Trying to convince yourself you are not supporting murders of convenience. “Clear my conscience, clear my conscience.” “It’s not murder, it’s not murder.”
    Trust me nnmns it is ending a life that could have lived. The fact that it is dependant on the host to protect it makes it even more horrific when its life is ended.

  • nnmns

    Ok let’s go back to this simple example:
    Imagine you are alone in a fertility clinic after hours with a six-month-old baby and a fire breaks out. You have the opportunity to save a container with five fertilized human eggs or the baby. The other will die in the fire.
    Which would you save, cknuck. Try to be honest. If you truly believe what you just said you’ve got to save the five “lives” over the one. But I hope we’d all save the baby. Obviously I would. What about you, cknuck?

  • pagansister

    “ending a life that could have lived” Key words “COULD have”, cknuck. After birth…already LIVING.
    Better: Never pregnant at all if not desired. Birth control, sex ed. Also, if deemed necessary by the woman, abortion within the first 3-4 months, IMO.

  • Ellie Dandrea

    Dear nnmns,
    Good try, and of course we would all save the baby…But your premise was wrongly stated. It should have been, there is a baby and a pregant woman in that fire..who now would you deem to be saved?

  • nnmns

    ED I’m glad you’d save the baby. You have more concern for the one real baby which would have suffered than for the five blastocysts or zygotes which very clearly would not have suffered.
    That’s a very different issue from the one you propose, between saving one of two living people.,

  • cknuck

    nnmns that scenario is not what is happening with the one million lives are being ended through abortion each year here in the U.S.
    Your scenario is ridiculous because the majority of abortions are selfish decisions made in the pursuit of convenience, whereas the life inside is perceived as an inconvenience.

  • nnmns

    That example (I just borrowed it) is an excellent example because it demonstrates that we really don’t think of babies and bzefs, especially earlier bzefs, the same way. Even anti-abortionists don’t.

  • cknuck

    For those of us that believe in the death penalty here’s another scenario; On the one hand you have Hitler and the other an unborn baby. Who gets to live? Using test tube babies in your scenario only purposes to eliminate the human element not rightfully so as it was point out previously the pregnant woman is more realistic.

  • pagansister

    cknuck, you seem to think that the basis for an abortion is inconvenience. People do not usually go into a medical procedure just because something (in this case an unplanned/unwanted pregnancy) is inconvenient! Perhaps some do, but I’m sure that there are a lot more reasons than “it’s inconvenient”.

  • nnmns

    Hitler vs a bzef, Hitler vs a cat, Hitler vs a potato. Hitler vs Newt Gingrich, In every case choose Hitler to die. I fail to see the relevance.
    “Using test tube babies in your scenario only purposes to eliminate the human element”
    No, the fact it’s an early term bzef eliminates the human element. If it’s in the body of a woman and she’s aware of it she may well be emotionally attached to it, in which case she’s unlikely to abort it unless there’s a dire need.

  • Henrietta22

    Well, the thing is it doesn’t matter what I think of my neighbor having an abortion, it is her right to decide what she has to do. I can’t tell her how to raise the children she has, or what she feeds them or the doctor she takes them to, or the type of clothes they should wear, it’s her business, and not mine or yours Ck. The reason we have RoeVsWade in our laws. It certainly doesn’t give anyone the right to kill a doctor who saves womens lives so they can become pregnant again if it’s possible for them. They should be put to death in the states that allow this.

  • cknuck

    H22 as far as that goes the killing of the doc is not my business or yours anymore than abortions but that still does not make it right.

  • Henrietta22

    You’re right Ck, it becomes 12 people on a jurys business and the states laws. I can still have an opinion though just as you do.

  • cknuck

    Take your meds H22 and a warm glass of milk. You’re the one who started by telling me I didn’t have the right to an opinion about some made up argument, ” it’s her business, and not mine or yours Ck.” I know you are old (102) so I will just chalk it up.

  • Isabel

    Yes, it’s a serious problem. I don’t agree with abortion. Do you most LGBT try many ways to build a harmonious family by adopting a baby and Many bisexual of ^B ~i ~ M ~ i ~ n ~ g ~ l ~ e ~ .~ c ~o ~m^^ have already adpot to have a warm family. It’s a life. We’d better think it over before the action.

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