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Catholic World News

Catholic weddings plummet in nation’s most Catholic state

March 21, 2011

Between 1969 and 2009, Catholic weddings declined by 71%-- from 4,452 to 1,300-- in Rhode Island. During the same time period, the number of civil marriages fell by 17%.

59% of Rhode Island’s residents are Catholic, making Rhode Island the only US state with a Catholic majority.

“In 1965, if a couple was living together, it would have been scandalous.” said one Rhode Island priest. “Today, it seems no one blinks an eye.”

The decline of Catholic weddings in Rhode Island is even steeper than the nationwide decline. The number of Catholic weddings in the United States stood at 355,182 in 1965, rose until the early 1970s, then fell to 292,499 in 1995. The number then fell steeply to 191,265 in 2008-- a decline of 35% in less than a decade and a half.


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  • Posted by: unum - Mar. 21, 2011 7:21 PM ET USA

    The marriage stats are just more evidence that the culture is rapidly changing the Church in the U.S. Christ told us to change the world with His message, but our leaders put their progressive faith in government instead of His message. We now get our moral teaching from the Supreme Court instead of from most of the bishops. "And Jesus wept."