Faith, Conversion, and Challenge: A Qualitative Study of Chinese Immigrant Christian Marriage (in the USA)


Christianity, China, United States, marriage, family, religious beliefs


Chinese Christians in the United States have experienced unique challenges after their conversion to Christianity. Twenty-two highly religious Chinese Christian couples (N = 44) were interviewed to examine how religious faith influenced their marriage and family life. Questions regarding faith, marriage, family life, and challenges with religious beliefs and practices were asked. Qualitative grounded theory methods were employed to analyze the data and four themes related to the topic of challenges were identified: 1) The Challenge of Conversion to Christianity; 2) The Internal Challenge of Battling the "Old Self"; 3) The Intra-marriage Challenges of Being "Unequally Yoked"; and 4) The External Challenge of "The World's Lure." Supporting interview data are presented in connection with each theme. Implications for research and practice are discussed.

Original Publication Citation

Lu, Y., Marks, L. D., *Nesteruk, O., Goodman, M., & *Apavaloaie, L. (2013). Faith, conversion, and challenge: A qualitative study of Chinese immigrant Christian marriages. Journal of Comparative Family Studies, 44, 227-247.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL


Journal of Comparative Family Studies




Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor