Baptist Ministers Habits, Attitudes, and Beliefs Concerning Alcohol Use

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Title: Baptist Ministers Habits, Attitudes, and Beliefs Concerning Alcohol Use
Author: Austin, Christopher Lynn
Advisors: Dr. Conrad Glass, Committee Chair
Dr. Deborah Luckadoo, Committee Member
Dr. Duane Akroyd, Committee Member
Dr. George Vaughan, Committee Member
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to quantitatively explore the habits, attitudes, and beliefs concerning alcohol use among a sampling of Baptist ministers whose congregations are affiliated with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSCNC). Scant research has been done in this area, thus this study is an exploration into uncharted territory; the irony is that many do not realize how uncharted this landscape is. Given this disconnect, this study's results provide important information to those who work, study, research, minister to, and who perhaps are Baptist. Specifically, it provides important data to the BSCNC. A survey instrument was mailed to a random sample of pastors affiliated with the BSCNC. Beyond the scope of demographic information, Likert scales were used in the composition of the research survey questionnaire instrument. A panel of experts aided in validating the questions. Specifically, the survey sought to answer the following questions: 1. What are these Baptist clergy biblical understandings concerning alcohol use, and is there any relationship between these ministers' beliefs and demographic factors such as age, educational background, theological background/identify, and church and family background? 2. What are the ministers' alcohol use behaviors, and do their alcohol use behaviors reflect their biblical understanding of alcohol use? 3. Have any of the ministers had any problems with their alcohol use, and is there any correlation between problem drinking and biblical understanding? 4. Does their church offer any alcohol-related education to its members, and are they aware that the BSCNC has services that can aid them in addressing substance abuse issues? 5. What are the ministers' perceptions of other Baptist ministers' beliefs concerning alcohol use, and are there any differences between their own beliefs and their perceptions of their peers' beliefs? The findings of the research study suggested the following: (1) There was no single view of alcohol among the ministers; (2) Correlation existed between scriptural views concerning alcohol and theological identity; (3) Correlation existed between scriptural belief of alcohol and level of education; (4) Correlation existed between scriptural belief of alcohol and church and family backgrounds; (5) There existed a misperception between the ministers perceptions of their peers beliefs concerning alcohol use and their peers actual belief; (6) In general, alcohol education in the ministers' congregations target people from the sixth grade and older, as compared to such education programming for those in grades K-5th; (7) A majority of respondents were unaware of technical assistance available from the BSCNC.
Date: 2005-07-08
Degree: EdD
Discipline: Adult and Community College Education

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