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BRIEF: Report shows religious convictions not among most desired parental traits

Parenting survey results
Parenting survey results

A survey released last week showed most Americans believe good parents should be loving, supportive and protecting, but few see the necessity of parents having a commitment to Christianity or religion.

LifeWay Research conducted the survey in March and found “Loving” is the No. 1 characteristic deemed mandatory for mothers (85 percent) and fathers (79 percent). After “loving,” four of the next five characteristics are shared, including “supporting,” “protecting,” “encouraging,” and “involved.”

According to a press release, mothers (35 percent) and fathers (31 percent) being “Religious” garnered a slightly higher return than being a “Committed Christian” (26 percent for both mothers and fathers) on the survey of mandatory traits.

“Clearly Americans who are not Christians themselves would not be expected to value a Christian commitment among parents today,” Scott McConnell, director of LifeWay Research, said in a press release. “However, 3 out of 4 Americans indicate their religious preference is Christian, Catholic or Protestant. This means only a third of these people appear to value parents modeling a commitment to Jesus Christ to their children.

According to the survey, Americans who self-identify as born-again, evangelical, fundamental Christians are less likely to select “Involved” (60 percent vs. 68 percent) and “Generous” (44 percent vs. 51 percent) and more likely to select “Religious” (56 percent vs. 26 percent) as mandatory traits to be a good mother.

“Being a good father or mother is subjective. Yet in America today the expectations are both high and consistent,” McConnell said.

The full report is available here.

Readers, do you consider see a commitment to Christianity or religion as a top parental quality?

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One comment

  1. Anna Marie Martin

    When I think about the desired quals for a Daddy, the two things that come up for me are “kindness” and “silliness.” Daddies should be kind and silly.

    I know people go with “stern,” “good disciplinarian,” etc., but I think if there’s a relationship based on kindness, the other stuff will follow.

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