Church Support as a Predictor of Children's Spirituality and Prosocial Behavior

Volume
Volume 43
Issue
Winter 2015
Title
Church Support as a Predictor of Children's Spirituality and Prosocial Behavior
Abstract

Church affiliation has been associated with many developmental benefits for children and adolescents, including higher levels of prosocial behavior; however, research has only minimally explored the mechanisms mediating these relationships. The current study examines the extent to which social support at church (i.e., church support) predicts children’s prosocial behavior independent of family religious practices and, subsequently, the extent to which the relationships between family religious practices, church support, and prosocial behavior are mediated by spirituality. Self-report survey data were collected from 279 church-going children between the ages of 6 and 13. Results of a structural equation model (SEM) analysis found that church support independently predicted spirituality and prosocial behavior after controlling for family religious practices. Spirituality partially mediated the relationship between church support and prosocial behavior. On average, boys reported significantly lower levels of church support, which in turn predicted lower levels of prosocial behavior both directly and indirectly via spirituality. Implications for parents and church leadership are discussed.

Authors
Dr. R.G. Crosby and Dr. E.I. Smith
Pages
243 - 254
Price
Add to Cart $5.00