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Exploring religion, youth and sexuality
Date:2/28/2011

lds are following their own paths, drawing from a variety of resources such as religious faith, youth culture, the media and friendship networks. They are creating sexual ethics that are informed by their religious faith. Similarly, their sexuality also informs the ways they understand their religious faith and belonging.

"However, a majority of young people believe religious leaders do not know enough about sexuality particularly youth sexuality. Others consider institutional religion a social control mechanism that excessively regulates gender and sexual behaviour, without sufficient engagement with young people themselves."

The research shows that nearly a third of young people think celibacy is fulfilling while nearly two thirds are committed to treating heterosexuality and homosexuality on equal terms. Meanwhile lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered participants reveal that there are psychological and social costs to living their everyday lives, particularly within religious communities.

Dr Yip said: "The aim is to document and disseminate the voices of religious young adults. We wanted to explore how they understand their sexuality and religious faith, and the significant factors that inform such understandings, as well as the strategies they have developed to manage their sexual, religious, youth and gender identities. We believe that the research findings would make a significant contribution to the debate and dialogue in this contentious area of religion and sexuality. We hope the research will speak to religious leaders/professionals, professionals and practitioners working with young people in secular contexts, and of course young people themselves."

Well over half the participants (65.1 per cent) were involved in a religious community and just over half (56.7 per cent) attended a public religious gathering at least once a week.

Most thought that the expression of one's sexuality was desirable but opini
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Contact: Lindsay Brooke
lindsay.brooke@nottingham.ac.uk
44-115-951-5751
University of Nottingham
Source:Eurekalert

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