31 October 2006

The most popular Saint to the Italians

Is San Padre Pio. When an Italian Catholic asks a Saint to intercede, Padre Pio is the most nominated Saint. The survey was commissioned by Famiglia Cristiana, a weekly Christian magazine.

Padre Pio was quoted as favourite Saint by 31% of those surveyed. Second was Sant'Antonio da Padova, with 25%. A distant third was Santa Maria, Madre e Vergine, with 9%. San Francesco d'Assisi came next with 7%, Santa Rita with 3% & San Giuseppe and the Crucified Christ with 2% Only one in 10 nominated San Cristoforo, San Michele, Madre Teresa or Santa Chiara.

But although over 70% of Italians pray for intercession to the Saints, it would seem they are not as well informed about the Saints as this would suggest. 75% recognise San Francesco as Patron Saint of Italy, but only 37% were able to also nominate Santa Caterina of Siena as Italy's second Patron Saint, often confusing her with Santa Chiara of Assisi.

Virtually everyone nominated San Gennaro as the Patron Saint of Naples, 83% nominated San Marco of Venezia & Sant'Ambrogio of Milan. Just under half were able to nominate Santa Roslia of Palermo, whilst only 29% knew San Petronio as the Patron Saint of Bologna.

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