1.1. BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Concepts of effective parenting styles and church growth from Christ apostolic church perspective make up the integral part of this study. Baumrind’s (2013) model of parental authority with its multidimensional character, its typological clarity, and its empirical efficacy was used to investigate relationships between parenting styles in individuals’ families of origin and church growth. The concept of Church growth is that science which investigates the nature, function and health of the Christian church as it relates specifically to the effective implementation of God's commission to 'make disciples of all nations'. Church growth is simultaneously a theological conviction, and an applied science which strives to combine the eternal principles of God's Word with the best insights of contemporary social and behavioural sciences, employing, as its initial frame of reference, the foundational work done by Dr Donald McGavran. Faith has been a vital part of daily living which has been best “transmitted and supported by lifestyle, in that life and behavior afford the child the concrete experiences necessary to frame an understanding of faith” (Dirks, 2011). Parents, or the primary caregivers in the home, have usually been responsible for establishing a lifestyle that guides a child’s spiritual development (Gangel and Gangel, 2009; Guernsey, 2008; Smalley, 2010; Strauss, 2010). Regardless of this phenomenon, a small amount of research has been designed to measure the effect a parent has on a child’s religious development (Meadow and Kahoe, 2010; Spilka, Hood, and Gorsuch, 1985). Freud (2011, 2011) hypothesized individuals’ God concepts are primarily projections of attitudes and feelings towards their own father. Rizzuto (2010) suggested that individuals’ concepts of God are largely projections of feelings and attitudes towards either one or both parents. Several studies concerning the kind and loving nature of God have been conducted from a psychoanalytic viewpoint (Spilka et al., 2010; Tamayo and Desjardins, 2009). The results of the studies have apparently supported a strong correlation between individuals’ perceptions of the loving and caring nature of God and individuals’ perceptions of the loving and caring nature of their parents. Yet, research has resulted in conflicted and mixed findings. Some study results have indicated no relationship between individuals’ God concepts and parent concepts (Vergote and Tamayo, 2011). Some studies have seemed to indicate a limited but statistically significant relationship between individuals’ God concepts and father concepts (Siegmann, 2011). Other studies have indicated a strong relationship only between individuals’ God concepts and mother concepts (Nelson and Jones, 2013). Still, other studies seem to have indicated a strong relationship between the God concepts and both the mother and father concepts (Godin and Hallez, 2013; Nelson, 2013; Strunk, 2012). Relationships between parents and children are a complex, multi-directional process of interactions (Bell, 2012, 2010). Still, parents usually seem to have the greater power to implement long-term goals and plans for child development (Hoffman, 2012). Eisenberg-Berg and Mussen (2010), Hoffman (2010), Jacob (2012), and Thompson and Hoffman (2011) found parent-child relationships to be a primary determinant in moral development. Hoffman (1963) found parent-child relationships are a primary determinant in moral behavior transmission. Studies by Coby and Kohlberg (2010), Hoffman (2010, 2009), and Thompson and Hoffman (2011) found parent-child relationships to be vital to the development of empathy in children. Colby and Kohlberg (2010) discovered the development of guilt to be primarily related to parent-child relationships. McCord (2011) found a primary relationship between parents and children in demonstration of aggression and antisocial behavior. Jacob (2012), Main and Goldwyn (2010), McCord (2011), McCranie and Bass (2010), Raskin, Boothe, Natalie, Schulterbrandt, and Odle (2013) found the same primary relationship in the development of depressive symptoms in adult children. Buri, Louiselle, Misukanis, and Mueller (2011) found a primary relationship between parents and children in the development of child and adult selfesteem. Archer (2012), Hagen and Wallenstein (1995), Jagacinski and Nichols (2009), and Pintrich and Garcia (2011) found parent-child relationships to be a primary factor in the development of goal orientation and achievement behaviors. Clifford (2011) found the development of mutuality, warmth, and physical intimacy in the spousal relationship to be primarily related to the parent-child relationship. Finally, Wheeler (2011) discovered the parent-child relationship to be a primary determinant in the development of religiosity and spiritual well-being. In view of the above research, it is evident effective parenting have impacted a variety of areas of children’s lives throughout the life span. Effective parenting seems to have formed a vital crucible of unparalleled influence. Therefore, the impact of effective parenting of children on church growth was examined in this study
1.2. STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Christ apostolic church is composed of urban churches having Christian households, which are expected to manifest sound growth, but the increased rate of immorality, early pregnancies, substance and drug abuse, among children from Christian homes has affected the growth of the church negatively. There are some organizations in Christ apostolic church that advocate for the life of the children and youths, that support Christian parents to bring up children, however field findings show that most of the youths engage in social practices that contradict Christian values, this raises an area of concern. This study is an effort to establish if the Christians are practicing effective parenting and the effects of their practices on growth of church in Christ apostolic church in Agbara-igbesa.
1.3 AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The major aim of the study is to examine effective parenting of children on church growth. Other specific objectives of the study include;
1.4. RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
H0: There is no significant impact of effective parenting of children on church growth
H1: There is a significant impact of effective parenting of children on church growth
H0: There is no significant relationship between effective parenting of children and church growth
H1: There is a significant relationship between effective parenting of children and church growth
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
It is the research’s hope that the research findings will help the Christian parents, workers, child advocates in understanding the absolute relationship of parenting and church growth. The findings will be helpful for other researchers in related field of study. The researcher seeks to write a manual based on these findings to be used by the Christian leaders in the church to teach and train Christians about Christian parenting. So, this makes the study very significant.
1.7 SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The study is restricted to effective parenting of children on church growth.
LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview)
Time constraint: The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Parenting: is the process of promoting and supporting the physical, emotional, social, spiritual and intellectual development of a child from infancy to adulthood. In this research, it means the parenting process that develops youths psychosocially
Christian parenting: is the parenting done within Christian homes, based on the Christian behaviors. it is the process of bring up children, supporting children from childhood into mature adults, using the biblical principles integrated with the external environment of community.
Child: a young human being below the age of puberty or below the legal age of majority.
Church: a building used for public Christian worship
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