Hispanic Catholics differ with evangelicals _ and with the church

May 7

WASHINGTON — The Pew Research Center’s look at “The Shifting Religious Identity of Latinos in the United States” also examined their beliefs, behavior and views on social issues. It finds that, beyond the church doors in the lives of the faithful, there are distinct differences between Hispanic evangelicals and Hispanic Catholics:

Catholics are less likely than evangelicals to:

* Attend services weekly — Catholic, 40 percent; evangelical, 71 percent

* Pray daily — Catholic, 61 percent; evangelical, 84 percent

* Take a literal view of the Bible — Catholic, 45 percent; evangelical, 63 percent

* Think abortion should be illegal in all/most cases — Catholic, 54 percent; evangelical, 70 percent

* Believe people can be possessed by spirits — Catholic, 56 percent; evangelical, 80 percent

* Identify or lean Republican — Catholic, 21 percent; evangelical, 30 percent

And evangelicals are less likely than Catholics to:

* Favor allowing same-sex marriage — evangelical, 19 percent; Catholic, 49 percent

* Pray to saints — evangelical, 9 percent; Catholic, 70 percent

* Prefer a bigger government with more services — evangelical, 62 percent; Catholic, 72 percent

* Favor church leaders speaking out on political, social issues — Catholic, 69 percent; evangelical, 61 percent

Hispanic Catholics are also at odds with their church on several key points of doctrine and tradition. They say the church should allow:

* Catholics to use birth control — 72 percent

* Catholics to divorce — 64 percent

* Priests to get married — 59 percent

* Women to become priests — 55 percent

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