Francis most trusted pope, Filipino survey says
A survey in the Philippines has shown that people there have greater trust in Pope Francis than any other pontiff. The survey by Social Weather Stations (SWS), conducted March 20-23, revealed that 87 percent of Filipinos have “much trust” in Pope Francis, while only six percent have “little trust”. Six percent were undecided. Those surveyed included Catholics, Muslims and Christians from other denominations. The result, released on Wednesday, showed that Pope Francis has the highest public trust rating in the history of SWS surveys, surpassing the 72 percent of Pope John Paul II logged in 1995. Pope Benedict’s net trust rating was at 58 in May 2005.
Pope Francis was in the Philippines for a five-day state and pastoral visit in January. Filipinos were greatly touched by the pontiff braving a tropical storm to meet typhoon victims during his visit to Tacloban City on January 17.
Feliciano Belmonte, the speaker of the Philippines’ House of Representatives, lauded the pontiff’s efforts to personally bring a message of hope, peace and renewal to the Philippines despite the bad weather. He said Pope Francis’s call for an end to conflict in the Philippines, “has made His Holiness a symbol of unity and promoter of peace”. “His openness to interreligious dialogue is of great significance to the present day reality,” Belmonte told ucanews.com on Thursday. (Source: UCAN)