Majority of U.S. Catholics Don’t Support Bishops on Abortion

Archbishop of San Francisco Salvatore Cordileone received an honorary doctorate in Christian ethics from Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio last month.

CNS Photo/Ryan Nolan, Courtesy Franciscan University of Steubenville

According to a new poll, less than a third of American Catholics support the recent push by conservative bishops to deny Communion to pro-abortion-rights politicians.

Other poll results also highlight the difference between Church leaders and many lay Catholics. For example, 63% of Catholics say abortion should be legal in most or all cases, and 68% believe that Roe v Wade, the controversial 1973 Supreme Court decision that protected women’s right to abort, should be left as it is. is.

However, the Church has made its position on abortion clear, and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops recently called on Catholics to pray for the reversal of the decision.

The survey, conducted in mid-May just after Policy released a leaked Supreme Court draft that would overturn Roe v Wade, was conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

Additionally, 70% of Catholics surveyed said divorced Catholics who remarry without obtaining an annulment should be able to receive Communion, while 77% agree that Catholics who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender should be able to do so. 76% of Catholics think politicians who disagree with the Church’s position on the death penalty should be able to receive Communion.

Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone said last month he would deny Communion to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for her support of abortion rights. The Vatican had previously warned against refusing politicians communion. Additionally, at least one diocese has said pastors should deny communion to transgender, gay, and non-binary Catholics.

Beyond the communion debate, the poll also touched on other issues facing the Church in the United States, including Mass attendance. Almost seven in ten people, 68%, said they attend religious services once a month or less, and 37% said they attend less often than five years ago. More than 25% of those surveyed said their opinion of the Church had deteriorated during this time, while only 17% said it had improved.

More than two-thirds of those polled disagreed with the church on the issue of female priesthood, and 65% said openly gay men should be ordained.

AP polled 1,172 respondents, including 358 Catholics. Catholic respondents were well aligned with the general population when it came to their views on Roe and upholding the legality of abortion

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