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Predicting Trust In The Pastor—A German Study

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Chapter Summary

Trust in the pastor is assumed to play an important part in religious praxis of members. This chapter aims to model parish member's practice of trust. More specifically, it asks which (perceptual) patterns lead parish members to trust or mistrust their pastor. A model of members trust is introduced in three steps. First, two fundamental dimensions of pastoral relationships are introduced, constituting the pastoral circle. Second, common roles of a pastor are localized in the circle. Thirdly, based on expectancy-value theory, consequences for the development of trust in the pastor are predicted. Empirically the pastoral circle is operationalized with a measure of ten potentially desired pastoral roles ('Desired Relationship'). Factor analysis of the 'desired relationship' support the theoretically postulated content structure, which can explain conflicts between closeness and distance and between religious and secular orientations in congregation work.

Keywords: expectancy-value theory; parish member; pastoral circle; religious praxis; trust



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