The Spiritual “Freelancers”: Young People, Religiosity and Community Problem Solving


  • Adrian Schiffbeck University of Passau, Germany, West University in Timisoara, Romania


Community, Motivation, Orthodox, Participation, Religion, Romania, Volunteering, Youth


Earlier research showed that religion is related to participation among adolescents. It emphasized the effects of belonging (affiliation to groups and traditions) on community service among Western populations. This article takes one step further and focuses on religiosity as a potential motivation for community problem solving during adolescence and young adulthood, in the Eastern European Orthodox cultural setting. Data comes from several semi-structured interviews with participants in a civic project conducted in the city of Timisoara (Romania). Findings indicated a low impact of the social religious component on engagement. The cognitive dimension of belief and the emotional bonding (prayer, ritual connection to the higher reality) function as indirect motivators, through the moral element of behavior. Results also showed a privatization of spiritual life at young adults (the invisible religion): estrangement from doctrines and the development of an individualistic type of morality, meant to drive volunteer activities further.



How to Cite

Schiffbeck, A. . (2020). The Spiritual “Freelancers”: Young People, Religiosity and Community Problem Solving. SCIENTIA MORALITAS - International Journal of Multidisciplinary Research , 5(1), 131-152. Retrieved from