An exploration of current attitudes towards the catholic church in Ireland and the tendency towards secularism within Irish society

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Clyne, Tom
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BA (Hons) in Social Science
Dublin Business School
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The objective of this research is to investigate people‟s views, perceptions and attitudes towards Catholicism and the Catholic Church. This research will explore the views of carefully selected members of Irish society and analyse their opinions concerning Ireland and secularisation. The design of the research invoked a qualitative approach using a semi-structured interview utilising questions which allowed participants the freedom to speak on issues they felt important. The research found that the majority of the sample was in agreement that the Catholic Church along with Catholicism has become secularised in Ireland. There was agreement also that the media and the declining influence of women has played a significant role in this development. It may be concluded that in order for the Church to survive and regain the influence and power it once held, an internal reformation in certain principles must be a top priority. Author keywords: catholicism, Ireland, secularisation, attitudes towards the catholic church