Date of Award

Fall 2021

Degree Type

Exemplary Work - Open Access

First Advisor

Joseph T. Kelley


Purpose: This review seeks to discover whether youth with chronic illness are more spiritual than their healthy peers.

Methods: A total of 111 articles were gathered via MackSearch and reference list evaluation. Of those, 63 were ruled out by title or abstract. Forty-three sources were appropriate for background reference, leaving five articles for review.

Findings: Based on the reviewed studies, any increase in spirituality among chronically ill youth compared to their healthy peers is minimal. There is suspicion that the majority of the assessment tools used were not adequately sensitive for the adolescent population.

Discussion: Assessments that are validated for youth are critical for confidence in research results. Implications for individuals and organized religion are explored.

Conclusion: There is limited evidence that youth with chronic illness use spirituality more than their healthy peers. More research is needed in this area that specifically applies assessment tools formulated for the adolescent population.

Included in

Religion Commons