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In February 2008 CARA surveyed 1,007 self-identified adult Catholics from Knowledge - page 10 / 10

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  • Respondents were asked about several things that could be done in their parish if they did not have a resident priest. Two-thirds (65 percent) say they would support sharing a priest with one or more other parishes, followed by more than half supporting bringing in a priest from outside the United States (56 percent), increasing the use of deacons (56 percent), and asking a retired priest to do more (55 percent).

  • A third of adult Catholics (34 percent) report that a priest from outside the United States has come to serve in the parish they attend in the last five years. Hispanic Catholics are more likely than non-Hispanics to say this has occurred in their parish (41 percent compared to 30 percent). Those attending Mass weekly are most likely to say this has occurred (55 percent).

  • Of those respondents who have had a priest from outside the United States serve in their parish in the last five years, a majority, 53 percent, say they are “very satisfied” with the ministry of these priests, and another 34 percent say they are “somewhat satisfied.” Thus, nearly nine in ten (87 percent) who have had an international priest serve in their parish in the last five years are satisfied with their ministry. Only 11 percent say they are “somewhat dissatisfied” and 2 percent “very dissatisfied” with the ministry of international priests serving in their parish.

Satisfaction with Church Leaders

  • More than eight in ten adult Catholics (82 percent) say they are “somewhat” or “very” satisfied with the leadership of Pope Benedict XVI (31 percent “very” satisfied). Among weekly Mass attenders, 93 percent approve of the Pope’s leadership at least “somewhat.”

  • More than seven in ten (72 percent) say they are “somewhat” or “very” satisfied with the leadership of the Bishops of the United States (22 percent “very” satisfied). Among weekly Mass attenders, 82 percent approve of the U.S. Bishops’ leadership at least “somewhat.”

  • The current level of satisfaction with the leadership of the U.S. Bishops among all adult

Catholics is 14 percentage points higher than in a CARA poll four years ago (58 percent).

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