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J Gerontol. 1985 Sep;40(5):615-20.

Religion, age, life satisfaction, and perceived sources of religiousness: a study of older persons.


Eighty-five persons aged 65 to 88 years participated in this interview study of three issues. The present study supported previous findings of a tendency toward increased religiosity in older age. This was tempered, however, by the finding that, although highly religious older persons tended to report an increase in religiousness over the course of their lives, respondents who were low in religiosity tended to report a decrease. These two groups reported that before the age of 20 a relatively small difference in religiosity existed but by old age this difference had become substantial. Second, there was evidence of a low to moderate positive relationship between religiosity and life satisfaction. Finally, mothers were reported to have had the strongest proreligious influence, although both parents were generally perceived to be important influences in religious development.

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