Global Insecure Attachment Predicts Indicators of Caregiving Faith Development among Australianbased African Pentecostals in New South Wales


  • Victor Counted Western Sydney University



attachment theory, compensation and correspondence models, global attachment styles, attachment to God, African diaspora, caregiving faith


This article reports on the association between global attachment styles and aspects of caregiving faith development that involve representations of God as a symbolic attachment figure in a cross-sectional cohort of 261 African Pentecostals in New South Wales, Australia. In particular, the applicability of the correspondence and compensation hypotheses of the adult attachment theory was tested by conducting bivariate and multivariate analyses, controlling for covariates such as age, gender, education level, and relationship status. After adjusting for covariates, insecure-avoidant attachment in human relationship experiences remained a significant predictor of indicators of caregiving faith, which involved proximity to God, perceiving God as a safe haven and secure base, and seeing God as a response to separation anxiety, thus supporting the caregiving faith compensation model in the attachment-religion framework and the role of trait-based attachment processes in faith development. Additional support for the compensatory attachment model is seen in the moderation analysis results-accounting for about 57% of the variance in attachment-affiliation with God-which reveal that African Pentecostals who are not in a relationship (single) and are avoidantly attached showed a trend towards developing attachment-to-God caregiving faith, compared to those in a relationship (married) who had lower level of attachment to God. Several study implications are discussed.   

Author Biography

Victor Counted, Western Sydney University

Victor Counted is interested in the psychology of religion and the social scientific study of religion. He recently completed a PhD thesis in Psychology at Western Sydney University and is completing a second PhD in Theology & Religious Studies at the University of Groningen. While in academic transit, Victor teaches at Western Sydney University and is Research Associate of the Cambridge Institute of Applied Psychology and Religion England. He has also served as Research Fellow of the Faculty of Theology at Stellenbosch University South Africa. Victor has published in numerous journals, including the Journal of Community Psychology, Mental Health, Religion, & Culture, HTS Theological Studies, Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion, Journal of Psychology & Theology, and Health & Quality of Life Outcomes.


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How to Cite

Counted, V. (2018). Global Insecure Attachment Predicts Indicators of Caregiving Faith Development among Australianbased African Pentecostals in New South Wales. Journal for the Academic Study of Religion, 31(1), 55–74.