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Religions 2018, 9(6), 195; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060195

Will God Make Me Rich? An Investigation into the Relationship between Membership in Charismatic Churches, Wealth, and Women’s Empowerment in Ghana

Department of Economics, Valparaiso University, 1400 Chapel Drive, Valparaiso, IN 46383, USA
Received: 15 May 2018 / Revised: 15 June 2018 / Accepted: 17 June 2018 / Published: 19 June 2018
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Abstract

In recent decades, there has been an explosion in the growth of Pentecostal churches in Ghana, many of which preach that belief in God will translate into material wealth for both men and women. While some have argued that women in these churches are likely to be more empowered due to female leadership and focus on the individual, others have argued that this may not translate to the typical congregant’s experience. After all, members of the Pentecostal church subscribe to the belief that wives should “submit to their husbands” (Biblia n.d.). In this study, I used the 2014 Demographic Health Survey to directly test whether women who identify as Pentecostal/Charismatic/Evangelical have a higher level of empowerment as measured by autonomy in decision making. I found that they exhibit significantly less decision-making power than other Christian women in making big household purchases and on their own healthcare. This exists both before and after controlling for wealth. Thus, the notion that Pentecostal women are more empowered than other Christians appears to be misguided. View Full-Text
Keywords: Pentecostalism; Ghana; women’s empowerment Pentecostalism; Ghana; women’s empowerment
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Gundersen, S. Will God Make Me Rich? An Investigation into the Relationship between Membership in Charismatic Churches, Wealth, and Women’s Empowerment in Ghana. Religions 2018, 9, 195.

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