Hundreds of people gathered in San Francisco’s Sue Bierman Park on Saturday to show their support for Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone. The event was organized by a group of Catholics in San Francisco who desired to have their voices heard after several months of public negativity directed at the archbishop.
Archbishop Cordileone has received backlash in the past few months due to the archdiocese’s requirement that employees of Catholic schools agree to live by the Catholic Church’s moral teaching. This “morality clause” has sparked controversy, but the archbishop has also received an outpouring of support from Catholics in San Francisco and around the country.
Saturday’s picnic was organized so that the public could show their approval and thank Archbishop Cordileone for his stance and courage.
“I think his stance has been misunderstood, misinterpreted by a lot of people, and I hope that will change,” picnic attendee Fr. Patrick Lee said. “That as time goes on, what he’s doing would be understood and appreciated.”
Picnic attendees enjoyed games and live entertainment, and Archbishop Cordileone was present to thank everyone for their support.
Pew Research Center released its study, America’s Changing Religious Landscape today, and it has some interesting (and often sobering) data on religion in America, including the trends of American Catholicism.
Some statistics on Catholicism in America include:
Since 2007, there has been a 3% decline in the number of Americans who identify as Catholic.
The median age of Catholic adults is 49 (up from 45 in 2007)
Nearly a third of all U.S. adults (31.7%) were raised Catholic, and most of them continue to identify as Catholics today. But nearly 13% of all Americans are former Catholics – people who no longer identify with the faith despite having been raised in the Catholic Church. By comparison, there are far fewer converts to Catholicism; 2% of all U.S. adults now identify as Catholics after having been raised in another religion or without a religion. This means that there are more than six former Catholics for every convert to Catholicism. No other religious group analyzed in the survey has experienced anything close to this ratio of losses to gains via religious switching.