Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Among statisticians there is a saying that a hierarchy exists in their field, namely there are lies, damned lies and then there are statistics.

The reason I bring this issue to your attention is due to a very good post that appeared at the LMS Chairman blog and written by Dr. Joseph Shaw. This post captures an aspect of the statistical/polling business that is very rarely discussed, yet presently dominates the polling industry, especially in the political sub-set of the et Invisibilium, namely the GOAL SEEKING of results.

The definition of goal seeking is: “… goal seeking is the ability to calculate backward to obtain an input that would result in a given output.”  

In the Shaw post, we get a great example of this PHENOMENON from the Catholic perspective. Here is the pertinent passage: (emphasis added)

I hope the poor study is expanded. I would like to see information about those answering the questions – age, sex, marital status, and whether they are converts or cradle Catholics. And I would like to see a comparison with Catholics attending the Ordinary Form, as opposed to people saying they are Catholics and not attending anything. Another interesting comparison might be Catholics who are members of the ‘New Movements’ (Neo-Catechumenate, Focolare, Communion and Liberation, and so on).

Yes, this is the key metric, i.e. the comparison with Catholics attending the Ordinary Form, as opposed to people saying they are Catholics and not attending anything. 

The reason why this metric is key, is that it appears as if it is being used interchangeably. And it would appear that the use of this metric is not arbitrary.

Moving on, the reason this humble blogger makes this observation is due to a trend that is happening in society in general, especially in Western society and which is called “RE-TRADITIONALIZATION”. At the top of this post, I have embedded a recent video from Dr. Steven Turley.

As we can see from this video, there is a major trend that is observable in the general population. This trend can be quickly summarized as follows: there is a rise in the level of religiosity among the general population, which is primarily due to religious women having more children than their non-religous counterparts, with large cultural and security elements thrown in. 

Yet this trend is hard to find in any of the statistical data coming out from the usual Catholic sources. Or at least, this humble blogger’s filters have not been able to detect it.

So the question then becomes, are Catholic institutions who monitor such areas of religious life intentionally “goal seeking” their results.

And then the follow-up question would be why? (Hint here)

The hypothesis could be that these institutions have hidden agendas which “discourage” them from providing a “statistically objective” representation of what is in fact happening in the individual dioceses of the Catholic Church as well as in the Church at large.

This misrepresentation would then, by default support the view that the 1960’s-esque happy clappy church of “the new springtime of the spirit” is a more accurate representation of reality, thereby providing justification for the local ordinaries to do “more of the same”.

Which would then lead to the conclusion that while the Catholic statisticians are “asleep at the wheel”, to be charitable, the conservative protestant sects are noticing this trend also and acting upon it. The obvious difference is that these sects are addressing this need that is present in the general population and luring these hapless souls into ERROR, and what that entails.

In the mean time, FrancisChurch is covering up for their GROOMING GANGS of Rome with the expected FrancisEffect.

*****

Survey of US Traditional Catholics

I have a piece in LifeSiteNews on this widely-reported survey, which says exactly what one would expect: Catholics attached to the Traditional Mass overwhelmingly believe the teachings of the Church and fulfill their obligations to attend Mass and go to confession.

I think the survey is a good effort, but I’d like to put its contrast with data from other surveys on the beliefs and practices of Catholics as a whole into some context, beyond what I wrote for LifeSite.

Conservative Catholics reading the period results of mainstream Catholic opinion and practice may get the feeling that the findings exceed their most pessimistic estimate of their co-religionists. Amazingly few Catholics appear to know, let alone confess, the teaching of the Church on the Real Presence; scarcely any actually follow the Church’s teaching on contraception

One reason for this is poor methodology in the surveys themselves. Notoriously, one survey which claimed that almost no Catholics accepted the Church’s ban on contraception arrived at this conclusion by excluding from consideration various categories of women; with other flaws, this made the survey pretty worthless

Even the respected research institute attached to Georgetown University, CARA, tends to survey ‘self-identified’ Catholics instead of Church-going Catholics. But what does it mean to ‘identify’ as a Catholic while rejecting all her teachings and never going to Church? The results of surveys including this category will reflect how many such people there are; how many there are in turn depends not only on the rate of lapsation and poor formation, but in the strength of the idea that one can be a ‘Catholic’ in some tribal sense completely unconnected with belief and practice.

Interestingly, in Britain a recent academic study showed that Anglicans are very happy to keep calling themselves Anglicans when they have lapsed, while Baptists stop calling themselves Baptists if they aren’t fully committed. The attitude of Catholics falls between these extremes. A less complete study would have suggested that Baptists are far more committed than Anglicans, but also more likely to lapse, which would have been misleading: in effect it compared committed Baptists and uncommitted Anglicans.

What this survey of church-going Catholics, attached to the ancient Latin liturgy, shows is that, within the undifferentiated mass of ‘Catholics’ who have a confusingly wide range of views and religious practices, there is at least one sub-group which is genuinely faithful to the Church, her teachings and requirements, and who average a reasonable number of children to whom this Faith can be passed on.

I hope the poor study is expanded. I would like to see information about those answering the questions – age, sex, marital status, and whether they are converts or cradle Catholics. And I would like to see a comparison with Catholics attending the Ordinary Form, as opposed to people saying they are Catholics and not attending anything. Another interesting comparison might be Catholics who are members of the ‘New Movements’ (Neo-Catechumenate, Focolare, Communion and Liberation, and so on).

In the meantime, we should be grateful that serious statistical study of Latin Mass-going Catholics has finally begun. 

Advertisements