The study aimed to determine the influence of religious and moral beliefs on contraceptive use, assisted reproduction, and pregnancy termination in Polish women requesting pregnancy termination for medical reasons.

Between 1 June 2014 and 31 May 2016, women deemed eligible for pregnancy termination for medical reasons at a Polish tertiary care center received an anonymous questionnaire comprising 65 items. A total of 150 completed questionnaires were collected.

Of the respondents, 95% described themselves as Catholics, including 60% practicing Catholics. The study revealed a discrepancy between respondents’ beliefs and the Catholic Church’s teachings: an overwhelming majority of respondents used contraception, and 79% were in favor of in vitro fertilization and believed the state should refund the treatment. Interestingly, 66% of the respondents who attended confession did not perceive abortion as sinful.

The study concluded by detecting a considerable discrepancy between declared religiosity and individual interpretations of the commandments and teachings of the Catholic Church. Despite stating they were Catholics, most women did not perceive abortion as sinful and did not follow the Catholic Church’s instructions regarding deceased children’s sacraments.