Catholics ignore Bishops’ instructions
Michael De Dora
Posted on September 12, 2011
Every four years, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops publishes a report on how Catholics should think about important political issues in light of church teachings. The report typically discusses the relationship between religion and state, and hot-button issues such as marriage equality and abortion.
Yet this seemingly fundamental document, which is published to align with the U.S presidential elections, is apparently ignored by most Catholics, according to a new poll:
A new poll of U.S. Catholics shows that just 16 percent have ever heard of the bishops’ document, “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” and just 3 percent say they have read it.
Most worrisome for the bishops may be that three-quarters of those who were even aware of “Faithful Citizenship” say the document had “no influence at all” on the way they voted in 2008; 71 percent said it would have made no difference even if they had known about it.
Overall, just 4 percent of adult U.S. Catholics say the statement from the U.S. hierarchy either was a major influence, or would have been if they’d known about it.
You can read more about explanations for and implications of the poll here.