(ANSA) - Rome, March 20 - The new pope's approval rating
among Italians is 83% and confidence in the Catholic Church is
on the rise, according to a poll released Wednesday conducted by
Italian research group Demopolis.
Among 802 people interviewed, 95% of Catholics showed
confidence in Pope Francis just days after his election, while
60% of non-Catholics and non-religious Italians approved of him
- a record surpassed only by Pope John Paul II during some
periods of his pontificate.
"What struck Christians and non-believers most...(was) the
simplicity of the new pope, his spontaneity and (use of)
language close to the people," said Demopolis Director Pietro
Vento, who added that these qualities were "highlighted by two
thirds of the Italians interviewed".
"For 65%, also the attention shown for the weakest in his
first words" were important, Vento continued.
Two-thirds of Italians are also increasingly convinced that
Benedict XVI's resignation was a courageous and revolutionary
act for the history of the Church.