The Role of Religious Institutions in Responding to Crime and Delinquency

Byron R. Johnson

in The Oxford Handbook of the Sociology of Religion

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780199588961
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology

 The Role of Religious Institutions in Responding to Crime and Delinquency

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This article focuses on the relationship between religion and delinquency and finds that religious commitment helps protect youth, whatever their socio-economic conditions, from delinquent behaviour and deviant activities, including the use of illegal drugs. There is also a more constructive side to the relationship between religion and behaviour, in the sense that religious belief and practice not only protect against delinquent behaviour but, according to the findings here, also foster positive and/or normative behaviour. The article also considers the current and potential role of religion and religious institutions in crime reduction, offender rehabilitation, and offender aftercare.

Keywords: religious commitment; delinquent youth; drug abuse; deviant activities; religious belief; crime reduction; offender rehabilitation

Article.  6897 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Sociology of Religion

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