This thesis reports an experiment made in an Edinburgh parish church to test
two sets of hypotheses: (l) that regular church attenders are more dependency moti¬
vated in their job lives than persons chosen without reference to church e ttachmentsj
and (2) that regular church attenders primarily seek the fulfilment of dependency
needs through their church involvement. The thesis also contains a theological re¬
flection on this study and ends with concrete proposes for the ongoing life of the
In the Introduction we presort a body of current thinking about the doctrine
of thellalty. Our experience in parish ministry, hospital chaplaincy, as well as
our study of some commonly held assumptions seemed to raise important questions
about this material. Our questions will be clarified. Then we formulate a set of
working hypotheses and explain the research design for gathering data in the study
of those hypotheses. Finally, we develop our method of doing practical theology -
a method to which we return in Chapter VI as we engage in a theological reflection
on the outcomes.
Chapter I is entitled "The Conceptual Framework." Here we present the Motivatlon-Hygiene
Theory of mental health. This is the model with which our work will
be done. A critivue is offered and the usefulness of K-H theory for our project is
Chapter II is entitled "The Method." Here we explain the method chosen to
gather and analyze data pertinent to our hypotheses. The methods are discussed,
a critique offered, and their usefulness for our purposes is indicated,'
Chapter III is entitled "The Procedures." A pilot study which was conducted
is reported in this chapter. Here we also present in detail the manner in which
our subjects were selected from a list of "regular church attenders". Profiles
are given of the church and of our subjects. Methods of contacting, Interviewing
and recording our data are also explained.
Chapter IV is entitled "The Results." In this chapter our "control group"is
unstructured (to enable testing of the work setting). The chapter documents the
results of our experiment for both sets of hypotheses with which we began.
Chapter V is entitled "The Project Conclusions." After presenting the limitations of our work and clarifying certain issues relating to the purpose of our
study, we develop some inferences of our findings. Our conclusions are summarized
and we end with a note on the Important aspects of church life for "mental health".
Chapter VI is entitled i'The Theological Reflection." It utilizes the twin
principles of relating theology and psychology which were explained in the introduction, With this model serving as a structure, our data is juxtaposed to some
elements of the theological anthropology of Ronald Gregor Smith, The lines of
contact to the body of material about laity (from the Introduction) are drawn.
The Epilogue presents some concrete proposals for the ongoing life of the
church and offers suggestions for further research.