Most Irish people think Pope Francis 'did not go far enough' on child abuse during visit

Most Irish people think Pope Francis 'did not go far enough' on child abuse during visit

A MAJORITY of Irish people believe that Pope Francis "did not go far enough" in addressing child sex abuse in the Catholic Church during his visit to Ireland, a new opinion poll has found.

According to the Ipsos MRBI poll published in today's Irish Times, some 55% of the population think the Pontiff could have done more to address the issue.

Less than a third (31%) believed the Pope had in fact gone far enough with his statements on abuse, while 14% said they had no opinion.

While Pope Francis spoke at events at Dublin Castle, Knock shrine and Phoenix Park during his two-day stay, the papal visit failed to improve the views of most people about the Church, according to the poll.

Ineffective visit

Just 5% of the 750 adults polled said the trip had changed their opinion of the Church "a lot", while 15% said it "somewhat" had and a massive 80% said it hadn't at all.

Of those surveyed, just over two thirds (67%) described themselves as Catholic.

During the Closing Mass at Phoenix Park on Sunday, Stand for Truth held a demonstration in Dublin city centre to mark the anger that many feel towards the controversial role of the Catholic Church in Ireland over the past century.

Speaking at the Mass, Pope Francis said: "We ask forgiveness for the times that as a Church we did not show survivors of whatever kind of abuse compassion and the seeking of justice and truth through concrete actions. We ask for forgiveness."

On the question of whether priests should be allowed to marry, 90% of respondents said they should, 86% said women should be allowed to be priests and 92% said contraception should be available in all circumstances.

Further questions asked included whether abortion should be allowed in a wide range of circumstances (53% for/41% against) and if gay and lesbian marriages should be recognised by the Church (77% for/16 against).