Journal of Religion and Health

, Volume 53, Issue 5, pp 1539–1561

Parental Participation in Religious Services and Parent and Child Well-Being: Findings from the National Survey of America’s Families

Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10943-013-9742-x

Cite this article as:
Wen, M. J Relig Health (2014) 53: 1539. doi:10.1007/s10943-013-9742-x


Using data from the 1999 and 2002 National Survey of America’s Families, a large-scale nationally representative sample, this study finds that parental religious attendance is positively associated with parent self-rated health, parent mental well-being, positive parenting attitudes, child health, and child school engagement. Although the strength of these associations varies to some extent according to socio-demographic factors, the interactive patterns are not consistently predictable. Moreover, parental health and well-being and positive attitudes toward parenting appear to be important pathways linking parental religious attendance to child well-being. These findings suggest that opportunities for participation in local religious services offered by faith-based organizations may be fruitful avenues through which the government and society can help American families enhance parent and child well-being.


Parental participation in religious servicesParental healthParentingChild well-beingAdolescent development

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyUniversity of UtahSalt LakeUSA