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Res Aging. 2012 Mar 1;34(2):156-173. Epub 2011 Nov 28.

Feelings of Gratitude Toward God Among Older Whites, Older African Americans, and Older Mexican Americans.

Abstract

The first goal of this study is to see if social relationships in the church influence feelings of gratitude toward God. The second goal is to assess the impact of race and ethnicity on this relationship. The data support the following hypotheses: (1) older people who go to church more often tend to receive more spiritual support from fellow church members; (2) older adults who receive more spiritual support at church will derive a deeper understanding of themselves and others; (3) older people who develop greater insight into themselves and others will derive a greater sense of religious meaning in life; and (4) older adults who develop a deeper sense of religious meaning in life will feel more grateful to God. The results also indicate that the study model explains how feelings of gratitude toward God arise among older blacks and whites, but not older Mexican Americans.

KEYWORDS:

Gratitude to God; race and ethnic; spiritual support

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