Most Icelanders happy with Pope Francis

Pope Francis in St Peter's Square, Vatican City.

Pope Francis in St Peter's Square, Vatican City. Photo: AFP

Head of the Roman Catholic Church Pope Francis enjoys above-average popularity ratings in Iceland, with a majority viewing the Argentinian Bishop of Rome is a positive light.

A recent Gallup opinion poll found that 56% of Icelanders have a positive or very positive opinion of the Pope, who took over from Pope Benedict XVI just over three years ago.

This is slightly higher than the 54% international average calculated from the results of 64 countries polled.

Lutheranism is the established religion in Iceland.

Lutheranism is the established religion in Iceland. Photo: Ómar Óskarsson

While 56% of Icelanders view the incumbent Pope positively, just 7% express a negative view. 37% have yet to form an opinion on Francis or declined to answer the question.

The official State church of Iceland is the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Iceland, headed by Bishop Agnes M. Sigurðardóttir. Around 4% of Iceland’s population are Roman Catholics.

The Portuguese are most impressed with the Pope, giving him a 94% popularity rating. This is followed by the Philippines (93%) and Argentina (89%). At the other end of the scale are the people of Tunisia, Turkey and Algeria, of whom just 15%, 13% and 9%, respectively, view the Pope is a positive light.

Agnes M. Sigurðardóttir is the current Bishop of Iceland.

Agnes M. Sigurðardóttir is the current Bishop of Iceland. Photo: mbl.is/Ómar

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