Special Issue "Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving"

A special issue of Religions (ISSN 2077-1444).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2016)

Printed Edition Available!
A printed edition of this Special Issue is available here.

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Patricia Snell Herzog

Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology & Criminal Justice, University of Arkansas, 218 Old Main Bldg, Fayetteville, AR 72701, USA
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +1 479 575 3779
Interests: youth and emerging adults; voluntary giving and participation; religion; community; spatial inequality; social theory

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

People are increasingly interested in, concerned about, and excited for the generational changes occurring to faith and giving as young people become adults. Emerging adulthood and the Millennial generation have received considerable scholarly and public press attention. Prior generations wonder: What will happen to the future of faith and giving, and how can we help the new generation emerge as adult leaders? Younger generations wonder: How can we reshape the future of faith and giving, and how can existing religious and civic organizations respond to younger generations?

This Special Issue invites social scientific insights on responses to these questions. We seek a wide variety of high quality articles that capture various angles on the faith and giving of youth and emerging adults, in the United States and internationally. The emphasis is on research that contributes generally to social scientific understandings of religion, charitable giving, volunteering, generosity, youth, and emerging adults. We are especially interested in trends related to participation in religious and civic organizations, including changing cultural structures, beliefs, and orientations to faith and giving in less formal or non-organizational contexts.

Interdisciplinary perspectives are welcome. In addition to the core social science disciplines of sociology, psychology, political science, anthropology, and economics, insights are sought from human development, education, social work, history, human geography, management and business studies, law, international relations, philosophy, theology, and other relevant fields with applications to these social science questions. Empirical articles will be the focus of the Special Issue, and consideration will be given to important theoretical, historical, and theological submissions that contribute implications to social scientific inquiry on these topics.

To submit a paper for consideration, please follow instructions below. To inquire on fit and other questions for the Guest Editor, please send emails to [email protected] with the following subject—Re: Religions Special Issue.

Prof. Dr. Patricia Snell Herzog
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Religions is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.



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———. 2014. Aspiring Adults Adrift: Tentative Transitions of College Graduates. Chicago: University Of Chicago Press.

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Macomber, Jennifer Ehrle, Mike Pergamit, Tracy Vericker, Daniel Kuehn, Marla McDaniel, Erica H. Zielewski, Adam Kent, and Heidi Johnson. 2009. “Vulnerable Youth and the Transition to Adulthood.” The Urban Institute.

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Smith, Christian, Kari Christoffersen, Hilary Davidson, and Patricia Snell Herzog. 2011. Lost in Transition: The Dark Side of Emerging Adulthood. New York: Oxford University Press.

Smith, Christian, Michael Emerson, with Patricia Snell. 2008. Passing the Plate: Why American Christians Don’t Give Away More Money. Oxford University Press.

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Keywords

  • youth
  • emerging adults
  • generational changes
  • faith
  • charitable giving
  • volunteering
  • organizational participation
  • generosity

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Editorial

Jump to: Research

Open AccessEditorial Multidimensional Perspectives on the Faith and Giving of Youth and Emerging Adults
Religions 2017, 8(7), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8070128
Received: 6 July 2017 / Revised: 12 July 2017 / Accepted: 12 July 2017 / Published: 15 July 2017
PDF Full-text (196 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This volume includes eight studies of faith and giving for youth and emerging adults.[...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
Open AccessEditorial Youth and Emerging Adults: The Changing Contexts of Faith and Giving
Religions 2017, 8(7), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8070124
Received: 28 June 2017 / Revised: 5 July 2017 / Accepted: 5 July 2017 / Published: 7 July 2017
PDF Full-text (583 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This is a book about young people—youth and emerging adults.[...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
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Research

Jump to: Editorial

Open AccessArticle Intergenerational Transmission of Religious Giving: Instilling Giving Habits across the Life Course
Religions 2016, 7(7), 93; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7070093
Received: 1 February 2016 / Revised: 6 July 2016 / Accepted: 12 July 2016 / Published: 16 July 2016
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (222 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper investigates the research question: How do religious youth learn to give? While it is likely that youth learn religious financial giving from a variety of different sources, this investigation focuses primarily on how parents teach giving to their children. Supplementary data [...] Read more.
This paper investigates the research question: How do religious youth learn to give? While it is likely that youth learn religious financial giving from a variety of different sources, this investigation focuses primarily on how parents teach giving to their children. Supplementary data are also analyzed on the frequency in which youth hear extra-familial calls to give within their religious congregations. In focusing on parental transmission, the analysis identifies a number of approaches that parents report using to teach their children religious financial giving. It also investigates thoughts and feelings about religious financial giving by the children of these parents as a means of assessing the potential impacts of parental methods. Additionally, congregation member reflections on how they learned to give provide insights on giving as a process that develops across the life course, often instilled in childhood, but not appearing behaviorally until adulthood. As such, this paper contributes to a life course understanding of religious giving and has implications for giving across generations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle “Church” in Black and White: The Organizational Lives of Young Adults
Religions 2016, 7(7), 90; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7070090
Received: 12 January 2016 / Revised: 30 May 2016 / Accepted: 30 June 2016 / Published: 12 July 2016
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (231 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The religious lives of young adults have generally been investigated by examining what young people believe and their self-reported religious practices. Far less is known about young adults’ organizational involvement and its impact on religious identities and ideas about religious commitment. Using data [...] Read more.
The religious lives of young adults have generally been investigated by examining what young people believe and their self-reported religious practices. Far less is known about young adults’ organizational involvement and its impact on religious identities and ideas about religious commitment. Using data from site visit observations of religious congregations and organizations, and individual and focus group interviews with college-age black and white Christians, we find differences in how black and white students talk about their religious involvement; and with how they are incorporated into the lives of their congregations. White students tended to offer “organizational biographies” chronicling the contours of belonging as well as disengagement, and emphasizing the importance of fulfilling personal needs as a criterion for maintaining involvement. On the other hand, black students used “family” and “home” language and metaphors to describe how their religious involvement, a voluntary choice, was tied to a sense of “calling” and community. We show that this variation is aligned with organizational differences in black and white congregations that situate white youth as separate and black youth as integrated into the larger church community. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Secular Volunteerism among Texan Emerging Adults: Exploring Pathways of Childhood and Adulthood Religiosity
Religions 2016, 7(6), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7060074
Received: 31 January 2016 / Revised: 1 June 2016 / Accepted: 2 June 2016 / Published: 13 June 2016
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Abstract
Prior research suggests that religiosity, especially public religious participation, is related to greater volunteerism. However, less is known about religious transmission across the life course, in particular whether and how religiosity in childhood is linked to later life volunteerism. This study investigates a [...] Read more.
Prior research suggests that religiosity, especially public religious participation, is related to greater volunteerism. However, less is known about religious transmission across the life course, in particular whether and how religiosity in childhood is linked to later life volunteerism. This study investigates a sample of emerging adults in South Texas (n = 701) with a high percent of Hispanic Americans (53 percent). Specifically, we examine pathways of childhood and emerging adulthood religiosity leading to secular volunteerism. Findings indicate that both childhood and emerging adulthood religiosity are associated with greater volunteerism, but the effects of childhood religiosity on emerging adulthood volunteerism are mediated through emerging adulthood religiosity. These findings provide further confirmation of the importance of childhood religiosity only insofar as religiousness persists into adulthood. In other words, we find that it is emerging adulthood religiosity that transmits childhood religiosity into greater secular volunteerism in later life. Furthermore, emerging adulthood public religiosity has the most robust direct effects on volunteerism. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Research Note: College Students’ Attitudes toward Christianity in Xi’an, China
Religions 2016, 7(5), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7050058
Received: 26 January 2016 / Revised: 30 March 2016 / Accepted: 10 May 2016 / Published: 20 May 2016
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Abstract
Atheism is the mainstream belief system in contemporary China. In recent years, a growing number of Chinese have converted to different religions, particularly Christianity. In this study, we conducted a survey in the region of Xi’an to investigate the following three questions: How [...] Read more.
Atheism is the mainstream belief system in contemporary China. In recent years, a growing number of Chinese have converted to different religions, particularly Christianity. In this study, we conducted a survey in the region of Xi’an to investigate the following three questions: How common is Christianity among college students in Xi’an? How many of them have converted to the Christian faith? How do they gain their knowledge of Christianity? It is a popular notion in China that many college students have, in recent times, converted to Christianity. However, our survey results do not provide support for this. While many students encounter Christian faith on university campuses, especially through organizations such as The Fellowship, students in this survey report low religious affiliation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle An Institutional and Status Analysis of Youth Ministry1 in the Archdiocese of Detroit
Religions 2016, 7(5), 48; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7050048
Received: 12 January 2016 / Revised: 17 April 2016 / Accepted: 21 April 2016 / Published: 6 May 2016
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (237 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study finds that a weak institutional infrastructure of youth and young adult (YYA) ministry exists in the Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit (AOD). This helps to explain why there is a disconnect between the Archdiocese proclaiming YYA ministry as a top priority since [...] Read more.
This study finds that a weak institutional infrastructure of youth and young adult (YYA) ministry exists in the Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit (AOD). This helps to explain why there is a disconnect between the Archdiocese proclaiming YYA ministry as a top priority since 1995 and youth ministers self-reporting that they feel like second-class citizens. Moreover, this disconnect is occurring in an increasingly social context in which the current generations of young Catholics are participating less in their faith than previous generations. Interviews with 44 youth ministers and 12 pastors reveal details of this disconnect between archdiocesan policy which states YYA ministry is a top priority and the practices of the archdiocese which indicate otherwise. Youth ministers are marginalized workers who feel insecure about their employment, causing many to obtain second jobs or routinely search for better employment. The sociology of organization literature, particularly the concepts of decoupling and social status are discussed to help explain this disconnect. Data are interpreted and the conclusions made that ecclesial officials take youth ministry for granted and that a weak institutional infrastructure of youth ministry continues in the AOD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Moral and Cultural Awareness in Emerging Adulthood: Preparing for Multi-Faith Workplaces
Religions 2016, 7(4), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7040040
Received: 29 January 2016 / Revised: 29 March 2016 / Accepted: 11 April 2016 / Published: 15 April 2016
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1369 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The study evaluates a pilot course designed to respond to findings from the National Study of Youth and Religion (NSYR) and similar findings reporting changes in U.S. life course development and religious participation through an intervention based on sociological theories of morality. The [...] Read more.
The study evaluates a pilot course designed to respond to findings from the National Study of Youth and Religion (NSYR) and similar findings reporting changes in U.S. life course development and religious participation through an intervention based on sociological theories of morality. The purpose of the study is to investigate the impacts of a business course in a public university designed to prepare emerging adults for culturally and religiously diverse workplaces. The intended outcomes are for students to better identify their personal moral values, while also gaining cultural awareness of the moral values in six different value systems: five major world religions and secular humanism. The study response rate was 97 percent (n = 109). Pre- and post-test survey data analyze changes in the reports of students enrolled in the course (primary group) compared to students in similar courses but without an emphasis on morality (controls). Qualitative data include survey short answer questions, personal mission statements, and student essays describing course impacts. Quantitative and qualitative results indicate reported increases in identification of personal moral values and cultural awareness of other moral values, providing initial evidence that the course helps prepare emerging adults for multi-faith workplaces. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Charitable Sporting Events as a Context for Building Adolescent Generosity: Examining the Role of Religiousness and Spirituality
Religions 2016, 7(3), 35; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7030035
Received: 23 January 2016 / Revised: 14 March 2016 / Accepted: 15 March 2016 / Published: 21 March 2016
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (385 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Previous research demonstrates an association between religiousness, spirituality, and generosity in adolescents, but few studies have tested the mechanisms by which religion might facilitate the development of generosity in real-world contexts. In this paper, a theoretical model is presented describing the potential mechanisms [...] Read more.
Previous research demonstrates an association between religiousness, spirituality, and generosity in adolescents, but few studies have tested the mechanisms by which religion might facilitate the development of generosity in real-world contexts. In this paper, a theoretical model is presented describing the potential mechanisms by which engagement in transformational contexts (i.e., participating in charity marathon training) may lead to the development of generosity in adolescents. Participation in charity sporting events is theorized to increase generosity through both higher-order mechanisms, such as sanctification and the development of transcendent identity, and lower-order mechanisms, such as increased entitativity, positive emotions, and dissonance reduction. An empirical strategy for testing the model is presented; suggested methods for inquiry are longitudinal mixed method designs incorporating observations, questionnaires, and qualitative interviewing. Additionally, a case study of ongoing research on adolescents running with Team World Vision is described as an application of the model to an actual research context. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle Redefining Religious Nones: Lessons from Chinese and Japanese American Young Adults
Religions 2015, 6(3), 891-911; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel6030891
Received: 13 June 2015 / Revised: 20 July 2015 / Accepted: 27 July 2015 / Published: 30 July 2015
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (929 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This analysis of Chinese and Japanese American young adults, based on the Pew Research Center 2012 Asian American Survey, examines the religious nones of these ethnic groups. Rather than focusing on their beliefs and belonging to religious denominations, it highlights their spiritual practices [...] Read more.
This analysis of Chinese and Japanese American young adults, based on the Pew Research Center 2012 Asian American Survey, examines the religious nones of these ethnic groups. Rather than focusing on their beliefs and belonging to religious denominations, it highlights their spiritual practices and ethical relations using an Asian-centric liyi (ritual and righteousness) discourse. Despite being religious nones, these groups have high rates of ancestor veneration and participation in ethnic religious festivals, as well as strong familial and reciprocal obligations. These findings indicate that, similar to other American Millennials, these groups may be better understood by how they do religion than in what they believe. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Youth, Emerging Adults, Faith, and Giving) Printed Edition available
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