This research investigates the attitudes of Taiwanese Catholics regarding sexual ethics and the factors influencing them. Demographic background variables are used as one basis of investigation.
Sampling: The number of Roman Catholics in Taiwan was estimated at about 230,000 by the Church in 2009. They scattered through seven dioceses. Of this total, about half are aboriginal Taiwanese. The survey was sent to 405 persons in these seven dioceses, based on a .0017 ratio of the Catholic population from each diocese. Of the 390 surveys returned, 349 completed the full survey for this analysis.
Variables and Hypotheses: This study used Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) for data analysis and model review. Sexual Ethics, the dependent variable, comprised attitudinal questions on norms of conduct on premarital sex, adultery, birth control, abortion, homosexuality and divorce. The six independent variable clusters were: Church norms, family upbringing, media reports, colleagues interaction, school education, and interaction with Church. The research sought to test two major null hypotheses. (1) There is no difference between the model covariance matrix and the sample covariance matrix. (2) Population and background factors affecting sexual ethics have no significance.
Results: The research findings showed, in terms of church members’ performance of the integral attitude in regard to the norm of church ethic, adultery was assessed and ranked as the highest average score, thereinafter, abortion, premarital, divorce, homosexuality and contraception. Structural model coefficient analysis revealed that family upbringing and Church norms were significant, and colleagues interaction has minimal significance related to Sexual Ethics. The rest such as media report, school education and interaction with Church have no significant influence. The analysis of sexual ethics attitude and demographic population shows that the difference is significant between cultural differences, length of Church membership, and education level. There is insignificant difference between gender, age groups, and marriage status.