Leonardo"s Notebook by Mattheus Mei

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.

Monday, April 28, 2008

American Catholics most Biblically-literate in the world

It's a great byline but there's a qualification. The survey that found said results only polled (Catholic) Christians and Non-believers. Still the findings are very interesting in that

"Asked if they had read a phrase from the Bible in the past 12 months, 75 percents of American respondents said yes, while between 20 percent and 38 percent of respondents in the other eight countries said yes."
Granted we might not be able to make pronunciations chapter and verse as our Protestant brothers and sisters do, but on a personal note when Catholics break open the word there's usually more than simply personal edification behind scripture study, it's one of the many benefits of coming to scripture with more than one's own personal interpretations.

It wasn't mentioned in the survey but it's perhaps one of many factors that American Catholics indeed do read the Bible outside of attending weekly liturgy is the fact that Protestantism is the main religion in this country and has shaped us culturally which in this instance is a good thing.

I know as a convert to Catholicism from being a Southern Baptist one of the great charges against Catholics was their ignorance to the scriptures (how else would they believe the strange things they do), I've come to not only realize that that's a bad assumption in the circles I associate with at least (call me a Catholic elitist I suppose) there is not much ignorance of scripture and the Catholics are adamant apologists for their faith. The image of the man in this post is of one Fr. Isaac Hecker (personal patron of friend Gashwin) who was a tremendous influence on American Catholicism and from my limited knowledge of him was a helper in the process of making the Faith (and Catholic understanding of scripture and scripture study) accessible to the average American - Catholic or not.

Sphere: Related Content

1 comment:

Gashwin said...

Woah! Cool to see good ol' Fr. Hecker up there!

Most interesting story. I'll blog this tomorrow.

Of course, it could also be the fact that the other eight countries are European, and we know the state of the faith in Europe, overall is ... Not Good.

And yes, Catholics are a lot better at reading Scripture and praying it . Definitely. Kudos to Vat. II for that as well. And let's not forget just how Scriptural the Mass is.

However, if one compares active Catholics (those who attend Mass weekly, that is, according to new data, 1/4 of those millions of millions), with the (the phrase is just too tempting to pass up) the unwashed masses of others who seldom darken a church door, I'm sure we wouldn't be that far ahead of Russia.