Beyond the bucket list: Identity-centered religious calling, being, and action among parents

David C. Dollahite, Loren D. Marks, Taleah M. Kear, Brittany M. Lewis, Megan L. Stokes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


From a positive family psychology perspective, this study explores identity-centered religious calling, being, and action among parents of youth, that is, what religious parents believe they are called to be and to do in relation to their adolescent children. Twenty-nine Christian, Jewish, and Muslim families of youth (N = 58 participants) were asked what they considered most important for them "to be" and "to do" as parents of faith. Qualitative analyses were conducted to determine major themes of responses. Parents indicated they believed they were called to be (A1) an example, (A2) authentic, and (A3) consistent; called to provide their children with (B1) support, (B2) love, and (B3) help; and called to teach their children (C1) religious values, (C2) the faith tradition, and (C3) the importance of religious identity. This study emphasizes the potential of identity-centered calling, being, and action as valuable constructs in religious/spiritual formation. Implications are discussed regarding how religious and secular education may benefit from reconstructing emphasis on developing one's being.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-54
Number of pages11
JournalPsychology of Religion and Spirituality
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 American Psychological Association.


  • being
  • calling
  • identity
  • parenting
  • religion


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