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Survey shows young adult Catholics favour personalised faith

A survey of young adult Catholics in the US reported a strong preference for a personalised faith, rather than one emphasising the rules of the institutional church.

"Many young Catholics have a weaker and more tentative affiliation with the institutional church than previous generations," the authors concluded. "Most young adult Catholics today, however, are not angry at the church. They are simply distanced from it. Where many seek a church community, they often encounter one of hierarchy."

The survey and an analysis are contained in the book Young Adult Catholics: Religion in the Culture of Choice, to be published next month by the University of Notre Dame Press.

At the same time, it showed almost total adherence to core Christian beliefs such as that Christ is God or the son of God.

The survey also reported an overwhelming desire in young adults to have their children receive religious instruction.