According to the latest public opinion poll conducted by the Public Opinion Research Center (OBOP), a majority of Poles are loyal Catholics, but by no means all happy about the role of the Catholic Church in politics and society.
RFE/RL – 20 August 2002 – The survey, carried out by the OBOP survey agency, gives the following results on attitudes to religion: believing and practicing regularly — 56 percent, believing and practicing irregularly — 30 percent, believing but not practicing — 12 percent, non-believing — 2 percent.
Responses to the question, “How much do you trust the Catholic Church?” produced the answers: very much — 37 percent, fairly much — 32 percent, while 15 percent “rather did not” trust it, and 11 percent definitely did not.
The church’s involvement in politics was according to respondents: too great — 56 percent, “as it should be” — 32 percent, too little — 4 percent, with 8 percent not giving a definite answer. As to whether the government ought to act always according to the social teaching of the Catholic Church, the answers were almost equally divided: yes — 46 percent, no — 45 percent, with 9 percent giving no definite response.
Summing up, OBOP found that “a positive attitude to the Catholic Church and its presence in the public life of the country” characterizes a quarter of the population (25 percent). On the other hand, 19 percent exhibit “a negative attitude” — distrust of the church, reluctance to have the principles of its teaching in political activities, and a conviction that its influence is too great.
This news item was originally published by RFE/RL, Poland, Belarus,and Ukraine Report, Vol. 4, No. 31, 20 August 2002. Copyright © 2002. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org