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Lifetime Trauma, Prayer, and Psychological Distress in Late Life

Publication Abstract

Krause, Neal. 2009. "Lifetime Trauma, Prayer, and Psychological Distress in Late Life." International Journal for the Psychology of Religion, 19(1): 55-72.

The purpose of this study is to see whether prayer helps older people cope more effectively with the adverse effects of lifetime trauma. Data from a nationwide survey of older adults reveal that the size of the relationship between traumatic events and depressive symptoms is reduced for older people who believe that only God knows when it is best to answer a prayer and when they believe that only God knows the best way to answer it. The findings further reveal that these beliefs about prayer outcomes are especially likely to offset the effects of traumatic events that arose during childhood.

DOI:10.1080/10508610802471112 (Full Text)

PMCID: PMC2831652. (Pub Med Central)

Country of focus: United States of America.

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