Church attendance, age, and belief in the afterlife: Some additional evidence
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Summary and Conclusions
This mixed bag of empirical evidence does not resolve the theological and econmic questions raised in conjunction with the “afterlife capital” model of church attendance, including not only afterlife but a mixture of current benefits as well, is present in all of the evidence cited. What evidence we have to offer suggests a decline in the afterlife motivation between 1973 and 1980 and a strengthening of other current consumption motives, but the afterlife motive is clearly still present in varying degrees of strength in some religious groups. What our findings do strongly suggest is that self-reported religious intensity, which undoubtedly contains elements of current consumption benefits, is a more important determinant of church attendance than belief in an afterlife.
KeywordsEmpirical Evidence Important Determinant International Economic Public Finance Religious Group
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