May 07, 2005

Catholic Church is losing sway in Europe

EUROPE
The Dallas Morning News

By TOD ROBBERSON / The Dallas Morning News

DUBLIN, Ireland A nation whose very independence is rooted in its Catholic faith, Ireland is questioning its longtime devotion to the Roman Catholic Church and the conservative bent of its newly elected pope, Benedict XVI.

Irish from various age groups say they view the church increasingly as a relic of a bygone era, and that it is losing meaning in their daily lives. The Vatican acknowledges that one of its major challenges is reversing the rapid decline in church attendance throughout Western Europe. ...

Europeans have a consistent list of reasons for their drift from the church. They criticize the Vatican as aloof, immersed in ritual and mired in orthodoxy. They reject prohibitions against artificial birth control and the use of condoms to prevent AIDS. They say the church was too slow to respond to widespread allegations of sexual abuse by Catholic priests.

Posted by kshaw at May 7, 2005 12:50 AM