Acton Institute Powerblog

Faith Makes a Difference

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“In the first nationwide study that specifically measures how faith relates to the organization and delivery of human service programs, initial results indicate that faith-based or religious charities do indeed conduct their operations in ways that markedly set them apart from secular organizations.”

This is the first of several studies highlighting results from the 2004 Samaritan Award survey. This study looks at the role that faith plays in non-profit organizations that participate in human service programs. The study, written by Calvin College researchers Beryl Hugen and Fred De Jong, and Karen Woods of Acton’s Center For Effective Compassion, methodically reviews the history of faith based programs in the United States and then moves on to clarify what is meant by “faith-based.” The authors also offer an analysis of the effects of faith on various types of programs, and how that faith is — and is not — communicated to program participants.

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Jonathan Spalink