Catholic Youth Displays a Rise in Homosexual Acceptance and Support
Article Link: http://huff.to/1vVY4ug
A recent study by the Pew Research Centre shows that 85% of American Catholics between the ages of 18 and 29 show an acceptance of homosexuality and 75% of people in that age group support same-sex marriage. Further up on the age scale displayed lower support of the homosexual demographic, with only a 38% rate of support for same-sex marriage among people 65+.
There is an unmistakable pattern displayed in the study that showed that those who displayed a greater acceptance of homosexuality (primarily the younger demographic) are also attending weekly service less often than the older Catholic group. Society is becoming much more open and accepting of people of various identities and backgrounds, especially the younger generation, likely as a result of the wealth of knowledge that is made available today thanks to media and the internet on different cultures and beliefs. Some of the church’s beliefs, such as their stance on homosexuality, may be contributing to the less prevalent appearance of youth at services and in practices. As a result, many religious groups that are rooted in more dated values and principles are struggling to fit to this new form. If religious groups (such as the Catholic Church), hope to stay appealing to the next generation to inherit their religion, they may have to display more flexibility towards these topics.
The topic of homosexuality in the Catholic Church is an especially important subject at the moment, as the Synod of the Family (a document composed by an assembly of the clergy discussing the topics of divorce and homosexuality in the church) occurred earlier this week, resulting in some controversy. Likely influenced by the decidedly more open Pope Francis, an early draft of the Synod stated that “homosexuals have gifts and qualities to add to the Christian community”. This caused panic among the more conservative bishops, and the document was later changed from stating that the church is “welcoming of homosexual persons” to “providing for homosexual persons”.
Again, the number of youth that accept, support and openly identify with the homosexual community is higher than ever, and like it or not, the church needs to be appealing to this next generation to carry on their religion. In fact, a significant portion of Catholic youth is homosexual and it is no doubt discouraging for those who share your religious identity to shun and reject your sexual identity. Many people were irritated with the sudden change to the Synod of the Family’s stance on homosexuality, as it displayed that while some of the higher religious authoritative figures are open to incorporating and accepting new aspects into their religion, conservative higher up’s biases are still holding sway over new and modern ideals that appeal to a new and modern generation.