Parental Religiosity and Youth Religious Outcomes: Variations by Family Structure

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Authors
Petts, Richard J.
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Issue Date
2014-11-10
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Abstract

Many studies have explored the links between family structure, parental religiosity, and youth religiosity, but results across studies have been inconsistent and have largely ignored new diverse family forms. Using data on 2,320 youth and their parents from the National Study of Youth and Religion, this study focused on whether and why religious transmission from parents to youth varies among diverse family structures. Overall, results suggest that parental religiosity was less influential in predicting youth religiosity for youth raised by stepfamilies, divorced single parents, never married single parents, and cohabiting families than for youth raised by married biological/adoptive parents. Results also suggest that less effective religious transmission within nontraditional families compared to traditional families is due (at least in part) to less effective religious socialization and lower quality parent-child relationships.