Lansing, MI- The various effects divorce has on children and families have gone under serious scrutiny and among the many things it impacts is the religion of children. A new study from Baylor University shows that children of the divorced parents turn away from the church.


The study published earlier this month in the Journal for the Scientific Study of religion found that children of religious parents who divorced were twice as likely to feel estranged from their church or become unaffiliated with a particular religion than children whose parents remained married.

Lead author of the study and Baylor University professor, Jeremy Uecker explained, “When both parents are religious, divorce has a negative effect on religiosity. They might think their parents’ marriage was ordained by God or something and that breakup can have more of an effect on their religiousness in adulthood.

Professor Uecker says that similar studies showed that divorce does indeed affect a child’s future beliefs, but this study was unique in that is also looked at the parents’ religious beliefs; whether the parents had different faiths or were religiously unaffiliated.

Researchers also pointed out children of single parents were more likely to be unaffiliated unless a step parent enters the home.  They believe that children with two parents receive more religious socialization and more likely to hold onto their faith into adulthood.

“I think it’s this idea of the loss of socialization and teaching of the religion when parents separate,” Uecker told US News. “The next goal is to identify the mechanisms and reasons why parental divorce matters—to follow a group of children over time and ask them about religious training and that sort of thing.”

Since religion plays an important role in family life, it can also become a factor in Michigan divorces. It is a multi-faceted issue and deeply complex, but parents, who divorce or separate, must decide what role religion will play in their child’s life, especially if they come from different faiths and beliefs.

When parents have conflicting religious views that arise during a divorce, the courts are tasked with making these crucial decisions. A third party must decide what is in the best interest of the child; they must decide which religion a child will follow, and where the children will spend holidays and other religious observances.

While religion is an important issue in divorce, it is just many of the issues an estranged couple must deal with. It can be especially difficult for parents to think of or completely agree on every issue. People in the midst of a divorce need guidance, someone willing to answer their questions and take their many concerns seriously.

Michigan attorney Stu Shafer realizes that divorce is a troubling time for his clients and will fight to make certain their parental rights are protected in divorce proceedings. Divorce attorney Stu Shafer’s top priority is your case, and will used his familiarity with Michigan law to ensure his clients obtain favorable support settlements and child custody arrangements that couples can agree on.