Conversion and relationship with God: study of gendered experience within Christianity
There is a long tradition of the academic study of religious experience, in relation to conversion, specifically within Christianity. Research devising a variety of models to study conversion have focused on reasons for change and associated motivation. This study aims to identify whether women experience conversion differently to men. Methodology includes a mix of field work and contributions from the Religious Experience Research Centre (RERC) at Lampeter University. The field work is conducted using semi structured interviews with a small number of individuals all with connections to evangelism.
Analysis of the evidence shows that the participants interviewed relate their experiences closely to the New Testament, asserting that one’s relationship with God is foremost. Subtle differences are identified in use of language between women and men. Women’s relationship with God is distinctive to that of men. These factors were present in both RERC database contributors and interviewed participants. Further research is needed to confirm the results as the study is limited to the experiences of those interviewed and the RERC database.
Keywords: conversion, gender, Christianity, evangelism
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