Skip to comments.Study: Over Half of South Jersey's Catholics Believe That Jesus Sinned
Posted on 05/07/2012 2:39:34 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
Although the sinless life of Jesus Christ is a foundational tenet of the Christian faith, a study recently released by the Diocese of Camden found that 60 percent of practicing Catholics in southern New Jersey believe Jesus sinned during his time on Earth.
"The number of Catholics who have a very flawed, a seriously flawed, understanding of who Jesus is, that's troublesome," Bishop Joseph Galante of the Diocese of Camden said during a press conference, USA Today reports. "We've got to re-focus on how we teach and inform people. Jesus is the foundation of who we are as Catholics."
The study was commissioned by the diocese with the hope that the results would help it to better evangelize the communities it serves. The study was conducted by the Barna Group, a Ventura, Calif.-based research organization, which surveyed 612 adults living in the six New Jersey counties within the diocese.
Of those surveyed, 34 percent identified themselves as Catholic, but there are some discrepancies between what the church teaches and what some of them believe.
For example, the study showed that four out of ten of these Catholics disagree with the idea that sex should be reserved solely for marriage. While 38 percent of the total residents living within the Camden Diocese agree strongly with the idea that the Bible is "totally accurate in all of the principles it teaches," only 28 percent of Catholics in the diocese believe the same.
Another major issue Galante discussed during the press conference was the high number of Catholics in his diocese who simply don't attend Mass. One-third of lapsed Catholics said they have other priorities or are too busy to attend, while others said they just aren't interested in church (27 percent).
"What intrigued me in particular was the high number of people who don't attend Mass simply because they have other priorities," said Galante.
"One of the things we need to do is emphasize that worship time can also be part of family time as well. These findings are both troubling and a challenge as we begin to deepen our evangelization efforts."
Peter Feuerherd, director of communications for the Diocese of Camden, told The Christian Post on Monday that another thing that struck him from the study was the low percentage of Catholics who invite others to church. The study found that Catholics (33 percent) were half as likely as Protestants (66 percent) to invite someone to visit their church.
"I find that the 'ask' is so important, and Catholics are not in the habit of the 'ask.' Even our parishes are not in the habit of the ask," said Feuerherd.
He also indicated that a major issue all churches have to deal with is the tendency for people to want to always be productive in the American culture. Those who don't take time off from work on the weekends are honored in our society, he says, and other "distractions" like youth sporting events and various forms of entertainment can sometimes take away from church attendance.
"I think we have lost ... the idea that whatever that Sabbath day is, it is valuable. It's important that people have it," he said.
Other interesting findings from the study:
-Of the Catholics surveyed, 38 percent favor attending church only on holidays.
-Among all of the adults surveyed, 51 percent said churches are "too involved" in opposing abortion or same-sex marriage.
-Nine out of ten (89 percent) adults said they know about the clergy abuse scandals that have occurred within the Catholic Church. Among those who are aware of the scandals, 89 percent consider it a "major issue."
-Only 18 percent of Catholics strongly agree that it is their personal responsibility to share their religious beliefs with others, as compared to 40 percent of Protestants and 36 percent of people who believe in non-Christian faiths.
I just learned at church the last few weeks some interesting things. I trust the pastor and believe that they are true.
One was that people think it was/is impossible for Jews to follow all 600+ Jewish laws. He said MANY observant Jews did/do. (Well, probably not their whole lives....) In fact, some of the leaders thought that if they could just get ALL the Jews to follow all the laws for just one day (but all on the same day!), that would bring the Messiah back!
And Jesus perhaps acknowledged this as well. Like when the rich man asked Jesus, “I have kept all the laws, what must I do to gain eternal life?” And Jesus replied something like “That is good that you keep all the laws, now go give away everything you own.”
And of course the Law does not equate to Sin. The Sermon on the Mount covers that! (One may keep the letter of the Law by not stealing, but then Jesus brings it down to what is in your heart and mind as well (to lust over a woman, car, cow, etc.)
And off topic - but I was surprised to learn that many people had the gift of healing back then. So that in of itself did not set Jesus apart too much. But nobody else could command nature (calming the storm, causing the fish to swim into the nets,, etc.) and of course raising the dead to life WAS a huge deal! And then like you said - the whole making Himself like God thing. ;)
“Springtime of Vatican II” bumpus ad summum
There is a reason she was conceived without original sin. It would make no sense for her, then, to sin later in life. And what sin would she have committed? Pride, envy, sloth, murder, thievery, etc.? I can’t picture the Blessed Mother committing any of these.
This is what happens when Catholics ignore the Bible.
Well at least they have Gallante up there. Hopefully he’ll be able to reach them.
Oh, please. I read Scripture every morning. Most folks I know at my parish do the same thing.
Maybe they went to a Latin mass and can’t understand Latin. Heh.
I can’t really comment on this without seeing the exact wording of the questions. The results are so ludicrous, I have to wonder if the respondents were misled or confused.
Unfortunately since Vatican II, the teaching of the faith has been abysmal (and that’s being charitable). It is no surprise then that our Pope Benedict is striving to make corrections to the teaching of the faith by wayward nuns, and liberal priests - both of which are too much involved in worldly pursuits instead of furthering the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ and the Holy Trinity.
The cleaning out of these heretical religious people within our church cannot be too soon for me.
So, based on this, Barna thinks 60% of self-described Catholics are material heretics? Only about 40% of self-described Catholics can actually be bothered to show up at church on Sunday. As for the rest of them ... if they live like pagans, why would anyone be surprised that they think like pagans?
As opposed to throwing out tired, trite, stereotypes like "Catholics aren't known to read The Bible"??
I'm Catholic. I read from the Bible (or The Bible, if you prefer) to my family just tonight. Trite stereotype disproven.
Pathetic. The poll takers are worse in their job then the so called Catholics are being Catholic. LOL!!
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