Tuesday, April 29, 2008
ITALIAN CULTURAL CATHOLICS
Richard Owen of the Times in Rome reports:
Italy professes to be a Catholic nation - but a majority of Italians do not know "even the most basic facts" about the Bible, according to a survey.
The international poll, conducted by Eurisko for the Catholic Biblical Federation, showed that in Italy only 14 per cent of those questioned were able to answer a series of questions about the Bible correctly. They included whether Moses or St Paul featured in the Old Testament, whether Jesus had written any of the Gospels, and whether the Gospels form part of the Bible. Another question which defeated most Italians was: which of the following - Luke, John, Peter and Paul - wrote the Gospels?
Among the respondents 88 per cent of Italians described themselves as Roman Catholics, three quarters said they kept a Bible in their home, and 79 per cent said they felt their lives were "protected by God". But only 32 per cent described themselves as "regular churchgoers", and only 28 per cent thought the Bible should be taught in schools.