Pope Francis said in an interview this week that the Catholic Church's emphasis needs to turn from sexual issues to the ‘freshness and fragrance of the Gospel.’ Polls show most American Catholics agree.
Pope Francis shook up the Roman Catholic world this week with his comments about abortion, contraception, and gay marriage, saying such moral and doctrinal issues should not be overemphasized at the cost of “losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel."
In the United States, many Catholics hailed what the pope had to say in a lengthy interview in a Jesuit publication, which may not be surprising given attitudes here seen as more liberal than official church doctrine from Rome.
• By 55-43 percent, most American Catholics say abortion should be legal in “all or most cases,” according to a Washington Post/ABC poll in July.
• Eighty-two percent of Catholics in the US say birth control is morally acceptable, Gallup found last year – not much less than the 90 percent approval among all adults polled.
• In March, a Quinnipiac University National Poll found that most Catholic voters (54-38 percent) support same-sex marriage – higher than the 47-43 percent general approval rate. "Catholic voters are leading American voters toward support for same-sex marriage," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
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