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'You just know': A phenomenological study examining how to recognize when you are called

Kevin L Warneke, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

This phenomenological study describes the experiences of 12 residents of a Midwestern community who were identified by their peers as possibly possessing a calling. The central research question was: What are the experiences that lead to feelings of strong commitment in their lives? Calling was defined as a summons, which originates outside of one's self, to serve a cause that betters humanity. Participants described the strong commitments they felt in their lives and explained their origins. Five themes emerged from the semi-structure interviews: (a) "You have to be asked and respond to being asked"—the role of a mentor in one's calling, (b) the call to service: "It just happened", (c) calls can come at unexpected times, (d) answering a call can be rewarding—but those rewards aren't always obvious, and (e) secular callings can come from a religious calling. The essence of recognizing one's calling was the realization that a calling can come at a moment's notice—even if it isn't immediately recognized—and the source of this call can be a summons to serve—society, and one's God, family, community and profession.^

Subject Area

Sociology, Theory and Methods|Speech Communication|Sociology, Organizational

Recommended Citation

Warneke, Kevin L, "'You just know': A phenomenological study examining how to recognize when you are called" (2012). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3505148.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3505148

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