Research Note: A Randomized Investigation of Evangelical Christian Accommodative Mindfulness

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of religiously accommodative mindfulness compared with traditional mindfulness on stress, anxiety, and depression in an evangelical Christian college sample using a randomized trial design. Volunteer participants (n = 78) were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 treatment conditions. The Christian mindfulness training (CMT) group protocol was explicitly adapted to the evangelical Christian faith, while the conventional mindfulness training (MT) group protocol utilized typical mindfulness meditations. Participants completed 3 weeks of treatment that included psychoeducational group sessions and prescribed daily applications of the mindfulness techniques. Posttreatment differences between the 2 groups were then compared on the measures. Measures used included the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS, Lee, 2012) and the Depression Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS, Lovibond & Lovibond, 1995). Results indicated significant differences within and between groups, with the CMT group reporting lower levels of stress and depression compared to the MT group, as well as lower overall negative symptoms based on total DASS scores. CMT group participants also reported significantly greater treatment compliance in comparison with MT group participants. Findings provide preliminary support for potential differences in treatment outcomes when religious accommodations are made to mindfulness. Limitations and recommendations are considered.

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