.- A new poll of New York City residents indicates that a majority of New Yorkers think Pope Benedict XVI's scheduled visit in April will be good for their city, and most New York City Catholics have a favorable attitude towards him.
According to a survey conducted by the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, 70 % of New Yorkers think the visit will be good for the city, while only 15 % do not. Eighty eight percent of Catholics specifically thought the visit would benefit New York, while only 9 % disagreed.
“Welcome, Your Holiness. Overwhelmingly, New Yorkers applaud the Pope's plans to visit the city,” said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
Twenty nine percent of New Yorkers, including 60 % of Catholics, would like to attend the Pope’s mass at Yankee Stadium.
The survey also asked respondents' opinion of Pope Benedict and his papacy. By a margin of 36-24 %, with 41 % undecided, survey voters answered that, yes, the Pope is leading the Catholic Church well. Catholics approved 62-22 %.
Fifty six percent of poll respondents had a favorable or very favorable opinion of Pope Benedict himself. Eighty two percent of Catholics were favorable towards the Pope, while only 11 % had an unfavorable view of him.
“Most New Yorkers don’t know Pope Benedict XVI as well as they knew his predecessor, Pope John Paul II, so his favorability and approval are just OK," Carrol said. "Maybe that will change in April. As the song says, 'If you can make it here…'”