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Religious socialisation in the family: A multi-dimensional and multi-level perspective

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Chapter Summary

This chapter focuses on parents and their influence on children. Four types of family influence on the centrality and different dimensions of religion for children are examined (individual influence by mother and father, influences of parents religious agreement, religious family climate(R-F-C) and transgenerational transmission of religion (T-T-R)). The data set is based on a Swiss survey of 393 families of which both parents and one child completed a paper and pencil questionnaire. Results show substantial effects of all the family variables on childrens religiosity. The individual influence of mother and father seems of paramount importance, but the actual and perceived spousal agreement concerning religion, the religious family climate and influences from the mothers and fathers families of origin also show a significant effect on childrens religiosity. The theoretical implications of these effects are discussed, both as they contribute to research on religious socialisation and empirical research in theology.

Keywords: childrens religiosity; empirical research; family variables; parents religious agreement; perceived spousal agreement; religious family climate(R-F-C); religious socialisation; Swiss survey; transgenerational transmission of religion(T-T-R)



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