Sarita Cargas

In partnership with Dr. Leslie Francis and Dr. Mandy Robbins of the Welsh Nat’l Centre for Religious Education, Sarita Cargas designed an “Attitudes Towards Interfaith” questionnaire to be administered at the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Barcelona July 2004. Dr. Keith Ward was the faculty sponsor for this research. Five thousand people were expected to attend this event. (About 25 percent were estimated to be Americans.) Each participant was given a questionnaire with their registration. The questionnaire had three major foci and several minor ones. The research team asked people about their view of the nature of religious truth to determine if people believe God(s)/Truth is revealed in many religions or one. The team asked people if they are practicing interfaith and if so, what this means. (For example, do people feel they can belong to more than one religious tradition or do they belong to one yet dialogue with others?) The team also investigated the relationship of personality to religious committment. Further, hoped to correlate an individual’s religious upbringing with their adult religious practices in order to find out if some religions are more amenable to adaptation than others. They also asked questions about the relationship of science and religion in people’s belief systems. The overall objective was to gain a greater understanding of how the reality of today’s pluralism affects the “ordinary” believer.