Kvalitet i livslånga tjänsterelationer : Svenska kyrkan ur tjänsteteoretiskt och religionssociologiskt perspektiv
Sammanfattning: The aim of this thesis is to clarify the social mechanisms that affect people'srelationships with the Church of Sweden. Interest is primarily focused on the majorityof the Swedish population who belong to the Church of Sweden, but who rarely makeuse of its services. This aim is accomplished in two ways. Firstly through a study ofthe ways in which church members understand and evaluate their relationships to thechurch and the services provided by the church, which they have made use of.Secondly through applying and testing service theoretical concepts in the churchcontext, and relating this to sociological theory of religion. This is discussed on threelevels. On a societal macro level changes in religion are discussed as part of thegeneral changes from agricultural via industrial to a service society. On anorganisational mezzo level the Church of Sweden is analysed as a service-providingorganisation. The micro level is analysed through a qualitative interview study with29 strategically chosen individuals.The theoretical analysis and empirical results show that the relationship betweenindividuals and the Church of Sweden can be interpreted as a lifelong servicerelationship. The individual uses the services of the church on few, but from theperspective of the individual's lifetime, meaningful occasions. The perceived qualityin these service meetings interacts with the perceived quality in the lifelongrelationship with the church. Even the church relationship itself can be understood asa value creating service through the fact that it mediates relationships to collective andtranscendental values and thereby provides security and a sense of coherence.
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