Families That Pray Together, Stay Together

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The family that prays together really is more likely to stay together.

A study conducted by the University of Virginia has found that prayer leads to intimacy and helps couples get closer and can help end disagreements.

"The closer you get to the home, the more powerful the beneficial effects," W. Bradford Wilcox, a sociology professor and director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia, said in a press release. "It makes sense that those who think about, talk about and practice their beliefs in the home, those who bring home their reflections on their marriage, derive stronger effects from those beliefs, especially compared to those who simply attend church weekly."

The ability of forgiving each other was also found to lead to higher levels of quality in a relationship.

"I think forgiveness is probably a pretty key dimension to the link between shared religious practice - prayer in particular - and success in the relationship," Wilcox added. "In past studies, forgiveness has been found to be a key influence on the success of relationships, home life and even workplace happiness."

The study also found that African American couples are more likely to have a strong spiritual unity.

"Without prayer, black couples would be doing significantly worse than white couples. This study shows that religion narrows the racial divide in relationship quality in America," Wilcox said. "The vitality of African Americans' religious lives gives them an advantage over other Americans when it comes to relationships. This advantage puts them on par with other couples."

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