Spiritual awakening among church members during the pandemic: an empirical study in England and Wales

Leslie J. Francis, Andrew Village, Christopher Alan Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

For some church members the pandemic may have been a challenge to faith, while for others the pandemic may have been an opportunity to re-kindle faith and to trigger spiritual awakening. A sample of 3,673 churchgoers (Anglican and Catholic) completed an online survey during the early months of the lockdown including the Lewis Index of Spiritual Awakening (LISA). The data demonstrated that more participants experienced a sense of spiritual awakening than a spiritual decline. Spiritual awakening was associated with personal factors (being female and older), with psychological factors (feeling types, intuitive types, and emotional stability), with religious identity (being Catholic), with theological tradition (being charismatic and conservative), and with active engagement in online services (lighting candles or typing in prayer requests). Experiencing spiritual awakening during the early months of the lockdown is, thus, associated with religious, theological, and spiritual practices, as well as with personal and psychological factors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-29
JournalJournal of Empirical Theology
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 25 Apr 2022

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