Krause, Neal, and Keith M. Wulff. 2005. "Church-based social ties, a sense of belonging in a congregation, and physical health status." International Journal for the Psychology of Religion, 15: 73-93.
The purpose of this study was to assess the relationship between church-based social support and satisfaction with health. In the process, an effort was made to see why these constructs may be related. Feelings of belonging in a congregation figured prominently in this respect. Findings from a nationwide survey reveal that people who receive emotional support from their fellow church members tended to feel they belonged in their congregation, and individuals with a strong sense of belonging were, in turn, more satisfied with their health. Negative interaction with fellow church members was also evaluated in an effort to take a more balanced approach to the study of church-based social ties. The findings reveal that negative interaction was not related to feelings of belonging, but respondents who encountered unpleasant interaction in the church tended to be less satisfied with their health.
Country of focus: United States.