Sunday, May 11, 2014

Catholic Acceptance of Church Teaching

Surveys and questionnaires continue to analyze our society. Within the Church, we have the recent survey on marriage and the family to prepare for the October 2014 meeting in Rome of the Synod of Bishops on the topic: Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the context of Evangelization. Some of the results that the mass media has presented to the public show that in many parts of the world, it is a minority of the Catholics who live and practice the faith.

One of the priests in the province  of Chungcheongbukdo, in the central part of South Korea, had for his dissertation a survey of college students within the province on their position on life.The Catholic students on euthanasia, capital punishment,  abortion and the like were higher on the side of life in their responses than the other groups. 

Eleven Colleges and 703 students in the province were the recipients of the questionnaire. Catholics represented 13.7 percent, Protestants 17.1 percent, Buddhists 9.8 percent and non-believers 52.8 percent. These are the numbers that  represent their place in society. The following are some of the questions that were asked.   

"Parents have a situation where the sick person has been in a vegetative state for five years, the doctors recommend euthanasia,  what would you do?" 34.9 percent of all the respondents said they would not follow the doctors' instructions. 55.8 percent, would have to be there to judge. 60.4 percent  of the Catholics would not follow the doctors' suggestion. 32.5 percent of the Protestants, 21.7 percent of the Buddhists and  31 percent of the non-believers would not follow the doctors instructions. As a whole, 11.2 percent were against euthanasia while 83.2 percent would accept it in certain situations. 39.6 percent of the Catholics would not want it to be legally permitted, which was the highest; 10 percent of the Protestants, 1.4 percent of the Buddhists and 6.5 percent of non-believers would be against making it legal.  

21.9 percent of the respondents were against capital punishment while the Catholics numbered 55.2 percent  against. Protestants 33.3 percent,  non-believers 12.9  and Buddhists 7.2 were against capital punishment.

If you had prenatal life, and you knew it was deformed or a case of cerebral palsy what would you  do?  The total number of respondents who said they would give birth was 39.5 percent. Catholics: 69.8 percent,  Protestants: 51.7 percent, Buddhists: 31.9 percent and non-believers 29.6 percent. To the question what to do if one is pregnant before marriage: 32.1 percent of the total would not have an abortion. 60.4 of the Catholics would not have an abortion. 35.8 of the Protestants, 29 percent of the Buddhists,  and 24.8 percent of the non-believers would  not have an abortion.

The results show that the teaching of the Church has made an impression on many of the Catholic students, and yet there is much more that needs to be done. The priest sees a need for more programs on life issues, networks to spread the teaching and to reach the families with the teaching.

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