The pope’s recent visit to the United States has spurred an increase in pro-religious views, primarily giving rise to the support for pro-life advocacy.

If you live in the United States, it was impossible to escape the knowledge and media coverage of Pope Francis’ historical visit. Pope Francis’ stay in the U.S. sparked a considerable incline in American practicing Catholics’ backing of the Catholic church and its teachings, demonstrating the pope’s powerful influence and presentation of Catholic values that has deeply resonated with the people. Following the papal visit, the number of practicing Catholics who view the pope favorably increased significantly to about 90 percent. A poll in August had only 83 percent of Catholics viewing him favorably.

The pope’s ability to present Catholic values and spread perspective on a variety of diverse issues convincingly has rallied an unwavering support from American Catholics, according to numerous surveys taken following the visit. Many of the Church’s teachings, such as views on marriage and especially support for the pro-life cause have been positively reflected amongst the practicing and non-practicing Catholics in the United States. 60 percent of Catholics now agree with the church’s teachings on marriage, up from 53 percent.

The stance on abortion is a very controversial issue that wavers considerably among Americans between pro-choice and pro-life. Despite these opposing viewpoints, many Americans agree that there should be significant restrictions on abortion in specific cases. On the issue of abortion alone, according to the Knights of Columbus Marist Poll, about 60 percent of Americans and 51 percent of non-practicing Catholics view abortion as morally wrong, with the practicing Catholics’ view jumping to 81 percent following the Pope’s visit. Overall, about 62 percent of the general American population voice support for the pro-life movement, showing an increase of six percentage points since August. The results of these surveys reflect the idea that many Catholic Americans hold a pessimistic view about the morality of United States.

The papal trip appears to have reflected the Pope’s overall vision for the Catholic Church, highlighting that after the trip 88 percent of practicing Catholics clearly understood the Pope’s vision compared to 55 percent before the trip. Americans overall impression of the pope increased significantly following the visit, receiving high ratings on Papal duties according to the Marist Poll by American Catholics. The considerable increase in most of the views on the Catholic Church’s teachings and religious freedom demonstrates the American population as largely perceiving Pope Francis in a favorable light, viewing his overall message and religious values as universal teachings.

With the Pope’s visit being widely broadcasted in the media, most Americans, both practicing and non-practicing Catholics, followed the coverage a good amount within the news and social media. With this large of an audience, the Pope undoubtedly was able to spread his Catholic values and perspectives on various religious issues considerably to a vast amount of American Catholics. As a result of the findings of these numerous surveys taken of Catholic Americans, the papal visit highly influenced American perceptions and views on the Catholic Church’s values and teachings across the nation.


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