April 14, 2005 - New Pope Must Do More To Curb Abuse By Priests, U.S. Catholics Say 8 - 1 In Quinnipiac University Poll; Most Catholics Say Pope John Paul Should Be A Saint
By an 86 - 11 percent margin, American Catholics say the next Pope should do more to combat sexual abuse of young people by priests, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released today.

U.S. Catholics say 66 - 14 percent that the Catholic Church is moving in the right direction, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds. Catholics also say 67 - 13 percent that Pope John Paul II should be made a saint.

By an 80 - 11 percent margin, Catholics say Pope John Paul's strong support of traditional Church positions was good for the Church. But many Catholics want the next Pope to take different positions on key issues, saying:
  • 53 - 34 percent that he should allow priests to marry;
  • 52 - 35 percent that he should allow women to become priests;
  • 46 - 37 percent that he should support stem cell research;
  • 55 - 33 percent that he should relax the Church's ban on contraception.
"Pope John Paul should be St. John Paul, American Catholics say. He got the Church moving in the right direction, they say, and his rock-solid orthodoxy was good for the Church," said Maurice Carroll, Director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"But the Vatican still gets low marks on the most sensitive issue among U.S. Catholics, priests abusing young people. And more Catholics than not want the new Pope to change directions on married priests, women priests and other issues."

The next Pope should oppose abortion in all cases, 33 percent of U.S. Catholics say, while 34 percent say he should oppose abortion in most cases; 20 percent say he should support abortion in most cases and 5 percent of Catholics say the Pope should support abortion in all cases.

Looking at the death penalty, 37 percent say the next Pope should oppose it in all cases, while 24 percent say he should oppose it in most cases, with 24 percent who say the Pope should support it in most cases and 6 percent who say he should support it in all cases.

"In similar percentages, a substantial number of American Catholics want the next Pope to advance a right-to-life agenda - both for unborn babies and for convicted criminals. There are few defenders of unrestricted capital punishment or of abortion on demand," Carroll said.

Only 29 percent of U.S. Catholics want the College of Cardinals to select an American Pope, and only 18 percent say the Vatican exerts too much control over the Church in America.

And only 32 percent want the next Pope to allow Catholic clergy to run for public office.

"About two-thirds of American Catholics want their priests to stay in the rectory, not in public office. Very few Catholics want an American Pope and fewer still think the Vatican exerts too much control," Carroll said.

From April 8 - 12, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,954 Americans, with a margin of error of +/- 2.2 percentage points. The survey includes 500 Catholics with a margin of error of +/- 4.4 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Florida and nationwide as a public service and for research.

For additional data -- www.quinnipiac.edu or call (203) 582-5201

1. How important would you say religion is in your life - very important, fairly important, or not very important?

                                CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                        ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        Tot     All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                               
Very important          61%     64%     89%     45%     54%     63%     84%    
Fairly important        22      27      10      40      36      25      12     
Not very important      16       9       1      15      10      11       3     
DK/NA                    1       -       -       1       -       1       -     




2. Would you say you attend religious services every week, almost every week, once or twice a month, a few times a year, or never?

                                CATHOLIC Q4....................
                                        GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        Tot     All     18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                               
Every week              31%     30%     22%     28%     51%    
Almost every week       12      13      14      12      15     
Once or twice a month   13      18      26      15       8     
A few times a year      24      30      35      34      17     
Never                   19       7       4      11       7     
DK/NA                    1       -       -       -       1




3. What religion were you brought up in? Were you brought up Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, or some other religion?

                        Tot


Protestant 48% Catholic 32 Jewish 2 Other 14 NO RELIGION (VOL) 4 DK/NA 1



4. What is your religious preference today? Do you consider yourself Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, or some other religion?

                        Tot


Protestant 45% Catholic 26 Jewish 2 Other 18 NO RELIGION (VOL) 8 DK/NA 2



5. In general do you think the Catholic Church of today is moving in the right direction or the wrong direction?

                                CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                        ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        Tot     All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                               
Right direction         36%     66%     78%     56%     71%     55%     72%    
Wrong direction         24      14       7      19      10      23       5     
DK/NA                   40      20      15      25      18      22      23     




6. In general, do you think that Catholic Church leaders are in touch with the views of Catholics in America today, or are they out of touch?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                            
In touch                54%     62%     48%     58%     44%     62%         
Out of touch            37      29      45      35      47      29          
DK/NA                    8       9       8       7       9       9          




7. Do you think that Catholic Church leaders in Rome exert too much control over the Catholic Church in the United States, too little control, or the right amount of control?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Too much                18%     15%     20%     12%     25%     16%    
Too little              17      16      17      16      20      14     
Right amount            57      63      53      65      46      59     
DK/NA                    8       7      10       7       8      11     




8. In general, how would you rate the effect that Pope John Paul II had on the Catholic church: Excellent, good, not so good, or poor?

                                CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                        ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        Tot     All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                               
Excellent               50%     71%     82%     63%     71%     70%     74%    
Good                    33      26      17      33      28      25      25     
Not so good              3       1       1       2       1       1       1     
Poor                     2       -       -       -       -       1       -     
DK/NA                   13       1       -       2       -       3       -     




9. In general, how would you rate the effect that Pope John Paul II had on the world: Excellent, good, not so good, or poor?

                                CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                        ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        Tot     All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                               
Excellent               50%     74%     81%     68%     73%     74%     75%    
Good                    38      24      16      30      26      22      23     
Not so good              3       1       1       1       1       1       2     
Poor                     2       -       -       -       -       -       -     
DK/NA                    8       1       1       1       -       3       -     




10. Was Pope John Paul II's strong advocacy of traditional church positions on controversial issues good or bad for the church?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Good                    80%     87%     75%     81%     77%     84%    
Bad                     11       7      15      13      14       5     
DK/NA                    8       6      10       6       9      12     




11. Do you think Pope John Paul II should or should not be made a saint by the Catholic Church?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Should be made a saint  67%     73%     62%     71%     57%     74%    
Should not              13       9      16      11      17      11     
DK/NA                   20      18      22      18      26      15     




12. How much does it matter to you who the Catholic Church chooses as the next pope -- a great deal, some, not much or not at all?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
A great deal            44%     55%     36%     41%     45%     48%    
Some                    33      26      38      40      30      24     
Not much                13      10      14      12      11      15     
Not at all               9       7      10       5      12      10     
DK/NA                    2       2       2       2       2       2     




13. Would you like the next pope of the Catholic Church to come from the United States or not?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Yes                     29%     31%     28%     24%     36%     27%    
No                      36      38      36      40      32      39     
DK/NA                   34      32      36      36      33      34     




14. Should the next pope -- support or oppose allowing priests to marry?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Support                 53%     47%     58%     52%     58%     48%    
Oppose                  34      41      29      41      27      33     
DK/NA                   13      12      13       8      14      19     




15. Should the next pope -- support or oppose allowing women to become priests?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Support                 52%     46%     58%     52%     59%     45%    
Oppose                  35      41      30      33      29      43     
DK/NA                   13      14      12      14      12      12     




16. Should the next pope -- allow Catholic clergy members to run for and serve in public office or not?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Yes                     32%     32%     32%     39%     28%     25%    
No                      64      65      62      57      69      68     
DK/NA                    5       3       6       4       3       7     




17. Should the next pope -- support legalized abortion in all cases, support it in most cases, oppose legalized abortion in most cases or oppose it in all cases?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Support all              5%      3%      6%      4%      6%      4%    
Support most            20      14      24      18      21      22     
Oppose most             34      36      33      32      39      32     
Oppose all              33      41      27      37      29      32     
DK/NA                    8       6       9       8       5      10     




18. Should the next pope -- support the death penalty in all cases, support it in most cases oppose the death penalty in most cases or oppose it in all cases?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Support all              6%      4%      8%      4%      7%      8%    
Support most            24      23      26      28      17      29     
Oppose most             24      25      23      23      26      21     
Oppose all              37      39      35      39      42      25     
DK/NA                    9      10       9       6       8      17     




19. Should the next pope -- support or oppose stem cell research?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Support                 46%     36%     53%     44%     52%     41%    
Oppose                  37      49      28      40      34      37     
DK/NA                   17      15      19      16      14      22     




20. Should the next pope -- relax the church ban on contraception or not?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Yes                     55%     49%     59%     56%     65%     38%    
No                      33      41      26      33      28      38     
DK/NA                   13      10      15      11       7      24     




21. Under the next pope, should the Catholic church do more to reach out to Jews or is the church's current position about right?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Should do more          40%     46%     36%     36%     43%     44%    
About right             47      43      50      54      43      41     
DK/NA                   13      11      14      11      14      15     




22. Under the next pope, should the Catholic church do more to reach out to Muslims or is the church's current position about right?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Should do more          40%     45%     36%     36%     42%     42%    
About right             46      43      49      51      45      38     
DK/NA                   14      13      16      13      13      19     




23. Under the next pope, should the Catholic church do more to combat repression in China or is the church's current position about right?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Should do more          41%     47%     37%     36%     49%     38%    
About right             37      33      40      41      35      32     
DK/NA                   22      20      23      22      16      30     




24. Under the next pope, should the Catholic church do more to combat secularism in Europe or is the church's current position about right?

                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Should do more          26%     32%     22%     26%     30%     20%    
About right             50      49      51      53      50      49     
DK/NA                   23      19      26      21      20      31     




25. Under the next pope, should the Catholic church do more to combat sexual abuse of young people by priests or is the church's current position about right?
                        CATHOLIC Q4....................................
                                ATND SRVCS Q2   GenX    BbyBmrs Seniors
                        All     Weekly  Less    18-40   41-59   60+    
                                                                       
Should do more          86%     84%     87%     86%     85%     88%    
About right             11      14       8      11      12       8     
DK/NA                    4       2       5       3       4       4