Religious And Spiritual Journeys Of LGBT Older Adults In Rural Southern Appalachia

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Emily Dakin, Associate Professor, Departmental Honors Program Director (Creator)
Denise Levy Ph.D., Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Dept. of Social Work (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:

Abstract: This article reports on religious and spiritual experiences of 11 lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or trans*-identified (LGBT) older adults in rural southern Appalachia. Template analysis of interview data yielded themes including: harmful experiences with Christianity in childhood and adulthood, religion and spirituality as sources of support, current participation in supportive Christian churches, and personalized approaches to spirituality and religion. Despite prior harmful experiences in some cases, religion and spirituality now provided meaning, strength, and support for most of the participants. The article concludes with implications for theory, research, and professional practice for clergy, social workers and other helping professionals.

Additional Information

Emily Dakin, Denise L Levy & Kelly A Williams (2021): Religious and spiritual journeys of LGBT older adults in rural Southern Appalachia, Journal of Religion, Spirituality & Aging, DOI: 10.1080/15528030.2021.1985035. Publisher version of record available at:
Language: English
Date: 2021
Religion, spirituality, Rural Appalachia, older adults, LGBT

Email this document to