How Does Your Brain Score? Take the Staying Sharp Brain Health Assessment

AARP Survey: 76% of People 50-Plus Pleased with Pope

66% say Pope should consider letting women become priests


Monique O’Grady202-434-2563,

September 22, 2015

WASHINGTON, DC—AARP released today online survey results of people 50-plus and their opinions on some of the most topical issues of the day. With Pope Francis preparing for a six-day visit to the U.S. with stops in Washington, New York and Philadelphia, AARP asked Americans 50-plus about the head of the Roman Catholic Church’s leadership.

AARP asked in the poll, do you think Pope Francis is leading the Catholic Church in the right direction?   

Of those surveyed:

·         76% of people 50-plus said yes. * 

Of those who answered the question, 35% of respondents indicated they were Catholic or had at one point considered themselves Catholic. 

Additionally, AARP asked do you think the Pope should consider letting women become priests.

Of those surveyed:

·         66% of people 50-plus said yes. ^

For this poll question, 37% indicated they were Catholic or had at one point considered themselves Catholic.  And, they were open to women priests at an even higher rate.

Of those surveyed who identified with being Catholic now or at one point in time, 70% said the Pope should consider women priests.


AARP also asked those 50 and older whether they believe in heaven and hell.

Of those surveyed:

·         72% of people 50-plus said yes, they do believe in heaven and hell. *

The survey is part of an ongoing new polling series to disrupt aging and highlight how Americans 50 and older feel about issues that affect their health, finances, and everyday lives.

AARP will continue to share the opinions of Americans 50 and older on the issues of the day through the end of the year. Follow @AARPMedia on Twitter.

* Survey date September 14-18, 2015; Margin of error is +/- 4%

       ^ Survey date September 18-20, 2015; Margin of error is +/- 4%

# # #

About AARP AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of nearly 38 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment and income security, retirement planning, affordable utilities and protection from financial abuse. We advocate for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services.  A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin;; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP en Español, a Spanish-language website addressing the interests and needs of Hispanics. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates.  The AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more at​

Search Press Center


If you are an AARP member and not with the press, call 1-888-OUR-AARP or email


For media inquiries, please contact the AARP Media Relations Office at (202) 434-2560 or


Facebook: AARP Media Relations

Twitter: @aarpmedia

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.


Member Benefits AT&T Wireless Cell Phone

Members save 10% on the monthly service charge of qualified AT&T wireless plans.

Member Benefit AARP Regal 2

Members pay $9.50 for Regal ePremiere Tickets purchased online.

Walgreens 1 discount membership aarp

Members earn points on select Walgreens-brand health and wellness products.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.