An Ipsos MORI survey has found that the British public's trust in priests has declined to an all-time low, although the clergy still scores higher than politicians.
The findings of the long-running survey known as the Veracity Index indicated that only 65 percent of adults say they trust priests to tell the truth, down from 69 percent in 2006.
The latest figures show a continuing decline in trust for the clergy in the U.K. from 85 percent in 1983 when the priesthood was the most trusted profession.
In contrast, trust in the police reached a record high, with 74 percent of the public saying that they generally trust the police to tell the truth. The figure showed a steady increase over the past decade, before which, around 60 percent of people in any given year said they put their trust in the police.
Priests ranked significantly higher than politicians, which generally remain the least trusted profession at 17 percent. Journalists are also considered less trustworthy than priests at 27 percent, although there are some signs of improvement.
However, clergy came in below weather forecasters (76 percent), television news readers (67 percent), and only slightly above "the ordinary man/woman on the street" (64 percent).
Trust in scientists was identical to its previous high of 83 percent from 2014. The latest figure is 20 percentage points higher than the equivalent figure from 1997, an increase that is only surpassed by trust in civil servants which rose from 36 percent to 59 percent in the same period.
Nurses have been ranked as the most-trusted group of professionals at 94 percent, followed by doctors at 91 percent.
"Ipsos MORI has been tracking trust in professions for over 30 years, and over that time there have been some notable movers," Gideon Skinner, head of political polling at Ipsos MORI, said, according to The Telegraph.
"Groups such as professors, scientists, the police, trade union officials and civil servants have become more trusted, but the clergy are the most notable losers. But not everything changes – doctors, nurses and teachers have consistently been near the top, and politicians and journalists down the bottom," he added.
Baptist minister Jonathan Edwards explained to Premier that the recent scandals within the church could be a factor in the decline of trust in the clergy.
"Clearly, there are many clergy who have slipped up and done things they ought not to have done, and that tends to blacken the reputation of others," he said.
"Statistics like this should always be received by the Church with humility; we're all failed people and we should be deeply disappointed by these things," he added.
- Danish school sparks controversy for canceling traditional Christmas service
- Hong Kong Catholic Church aims to recruit more married men to serve as deacons
- Amnesty International Ireland refuses to return illegal donation for pro-abortion campaign
- Pakistani Christian accused of lynching Muslims found dead in Lahore jail
Apart from attacks from Fulani herdsmen and Islamic extremist group Boko Haram, Christians in Nigeria are also facing increasing threats and attacks from occult groups that are targeting churches at night.
Many Americans who consider themselves evangelicals do not actually hold evangelical beliefs, survey finds
About a quarter of Americans consider themselves to be evangelical Christians, but a survey has found that a significant proportion does not actually hold evangelical beliefs.
A Christian teacher in the U.K. is suing a school after he was suspended for referring to a transgender pupil, who self-identifies as male, as a girl.
A prominent secularist group has called for an IRS investigation into an Alabama church after it displayed a sign that endorsed Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore.
A leading secularist group has raised concerns about cross memorials that were created by high school students in Georgia as part of a city effort to honor local military veterans.
The supporters of the Islamic State terror group are reportedly trying to frame Christians for the attack on Al Rawdah mosque in Egypt last month in an attempt to incite revenge attacks against them over the holiday season.
Members of the British parliament are asking the government to consider refusing entry to U.S. evangelist Franklin Graham, who is accused of making inflammatory comments against Islam and the LGBT community.
A new documentary from the History Channel has claimed that Jesus Christ may not have been born in a stable of an inn but a residential house owned by Joseph's relative in Bethlehem.
A young boy who was staying at the Smyllum Park orphanage in the 1960s was beaten "black and blue" after catching two nuns in an embrace at a boiler room, a child abuse inquiry has heard.
There has been a significant decline in President Donald Trump's job approval rating since February, and it is most noticeable among white evangelical Protestants, a group that proved to be his core voting bloc in the 2016 elections.
The European Parliament has reportedly threatened to impose sanctions against Poland if the country's lawmakers approve a church-backed legislation that would ban abortions on handicapped fetuses.