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Sep. 12, 2013

Six Months Into Papacy, Large Majority of Catholics Continue To Express Favorable View of Pope Francis

After six eventful months, Pope Francis is rated favorably by eight-in-ten U.S. Catholics (79%), largely unchanged since the days immediately following his ascension to the papacy.

Aug. 6, 2013

Religious Leaders’ Views on Radical Life Extension

No religious group in the United States has released an official statement on radical life extension. However, here are brief summaries of how some clergy, bioethicists and other scholars from 18 major American religious groups say their traditions might approach this evolving issue.

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Jul. 11, 2013

Public Esteem for Military Still High

More than three-quarters of U.S. adults (78%) say members of the military contribute “a lot” to society’s well-being, according to a new survey of Americans’ views on various professions. By contrast, just 37% of Americans think the clergy contribute a lot, putting religious leaders well behind teachers, medical doctors, scientists and engineers.

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Jun. 11, 2013

Iranians’ Views Mixed on Political Role for Religious Figures

As Iranians prepare to elect a new president on June 14, a Pew Research survey shows that just 40% think religious figures should play a large role in politics, while a quarter say religious figures should have some influence, and three-in-ten believe they should have little or no influence. But an overwhelming majority of Iranians say they back the use of Islamic law.

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Apr. 3, 2013

U.S. Catholics Express Favorable View of Pope Francis

In the early days of Pope Francis’ papacy, more than eight-in-ten U.S. Catholics (84%) say they have a favorable impression of the new pontiff, including 43% who express a very favorable view.

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Mar. 18, 2013

Latin America’s Catholics in the Spotlight as Pope Francis is Installed

Latin America’s share of the global Catholic population has increased over the past century, according to Pew Research Center estimates, but the portion of the region’s population that is Catholic has declined.

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Mar. 18, 2013

U.S. Catholics Happy with Selection of Pope Francis

In a new Pew Research Center poll, nearly three-quarters of U.S. Catholics say they are happy with the selection of Pope Francis. But they are divided over how big a change he represents for the church.

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Mar. 13, 2013

Resources on Catholicism and the Pope

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life has a variety of resources on Catholicism and Pope Benedict XVI, including public opinion polls, research studies, event transcripts and interviews.

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Mar. 13, 2013

Conclave Elects Pope Francis

Pope Francis was elected on Wednesday as the new leader of the Roman Catholic Church. Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio hails from Argentina and becomes the first Latin American pontiff. According to Pew Research Center data on the distribution of the world’s Catholic population, the largest share of the Catholic population (39%) lives in Latin America and the Caribbean.

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Mar. 5, 2013

During Benedict’s Papacy, Religious Observance Among Catholics in Europe Remained Low but Stable

When Benedict XVI was elected pope in 2005, religious observance among Europeans had been in decline for decades, and he set out to stem the tide of secularization. How successful was he? Pew Research polls indicate that during his papacy, religious observance among Catholics in France, Germany, Spain and Italy remained low but fairly stable.