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Value of Families

The old adage, "The family that prays together stays together," received some additional credence this week. A survey by the National Study of Youth and Religion at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found that adolescents ages 12 to 14 reared in religious households are more likely than their peers from nonreligious families to admire their mother and father, to not run away from home, to eat dinner with their parents and to have Mom and Dad involved in their social lives.

"There is a consistent association across a variety of measures that more religiously active families with early adolescents in the household exhibit signs of stronger family relationships," said Christian Smith, study director.

Seventy percent of religious youth wanted to be like their parents, and 90 percent enjoyed spending time with their parents -- versus half and three-quarters respectively of nonreligious youth.

(from The Pastor's Weekly Briefing, May 9, 2003)