Researcher looking for answers when a child abandons the family religion | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Researcher looking for answers when a child abandons the family religion

UBC researcher Glendon Wiebe wants to know about parents’ experiences when their adult child leaves the family religion.
Image Credit: Contributed/UBC
July 21, 2016 - 7:30 AM

OKANAGAN - A UBC researcher wants to know about the experiences of parents when their adult child leaves the religious tradition they were raised in.

Glendon Wiebe, working with UBCs Okanagan’s Barb Pesut, associate professor with the School of Nursing and Canada Research Chair, is hoping to connect with Okanagan families for his study examining family bonds when religion changes or is abandoned. Wiebe, a PhD candidate at campus, says past research has focused almost exclusively on the people who have left the religion—while the perspectives of the parents have been mostly ignored.

“For some parents, keeping the faith is extremely important and if their child leaves, it can lead to a difficult and somewhat lonely journey,” says Wiebe. “Others, however, may accept it more readily, depending on the circumstances surrounding their child’s religious change."

Wiebe says the diversity of the parents’ experiences is crucial to his research examining faith and family relationships.

“I recognize that it’s a sensitive topic for some, but I’d like to talk to individual parents to see how they have navigated and responded to their child’s departure from the family’s religious tradition.”

For more information or to participate in this confidential study, please contact Wiebe at or (250) 575-7671.


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