Many boomers returning to churches in search for meaning -- University of Southern California study
A study over generations that began in 1970 indicates the baby-boomers are engaging more in religion than they did in their youth. According to the study, 20 per cent of the 599 Americans in the 45 year study have indicated that they have "increased their religious or spiritual activities in recent years."
The current research team state that there are three reasons for the increase:
- people have more free time
- a growing sense of impermanence as one ages
- a direct experience of the fragility of life
Findings from many other studies indicate that women are more likely to be engaged in religious practice. According to Professor Bengston, one of the leaders of the study, this was not supported by the data of the Longitudinal Study of Generations that began 45 years ago at the University of Southern California.
"In [the most recent phase of] the study, we found that there was not a major difference between men and women in private religious practice such as prayer and devotional activities," Bengston said.
Whether there will be a similar effect in Canada remains to be seen.