Hall cautions that few conclusions can be drawn from his study, and that further research is needed. "There is no evidence that changing religious attendance causes a change in health outcomes," he said.Funny in an ironic way - when folks complain that churches are as corrupt and dysfunctional as any secular organization, and perhaps worse, I always respond: "What do you expect? Churches are hospitals for the spiritually ill." I might add that one thing that may exacerbate the organizational failings is that the church insists that relationships are built on trust and not verification (God does that).
But bad people exist, and cheat on systems which assume trust (rather than build it). In economics we call that moral hazard or adverse incentives.
And bad people find it attractive to go places where the code is to assume the best in people. Easy pickings. In economics we call that adverse selection. Many times those people manage to become treasurers at the parish, diocesan or national church (Episcopalians, think "815").
To all churchpeople: You know what I'm talking about.