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LanguageEnglish
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Table of Contents
                            I. INTRODUCTION
	A. OVERVIEW: WHAT DOES RELIGIOUS MILLENIALISM HAVE TO DO WITH PERSONAL DISASTER PREPAREDNESS?
	B. INTRODUCTION: THE PROBLEM OF PERSONAL DISASTER RESILIENCE IN THE UNITED STATES
	C. THE UNEXPLORED RELATIONSHIP: STRONG RELIGIOSITY AND PERSONAL DISASTER PREPAREDNESS
	D. PURPOSE OF THIS THESIS
	E. HYPOTHESIS
	F. METHODOLOGY
	G. ORGANIZATION OF THIS THESIS:
II. REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE
	A. DEFINITIONS
		1. Disaster
		2. Personal Preparedness
		3. Personal Disaster Risk Assessment
		4. Religion/Religiosity
		5. Christianity
	B. INTRODUCTION
		1. Literature
			a. Baseline Data: Religiosity and Personal Preparedness in the United States
			b. Behavioral Science Research:  How Humans Appraise Risk and Make Decisions
			c. Sociological Literature: Religious Doctrine as Interpretive Architecture
			d. Sociological and Behavioral Studies: How Religious Groups View Disaster in General
			e. Millennialist Theology: The Ultimate Catastrophe and How to Prepare
		2. Premillennialism
		3. Postmillennialism
		4. Amillennialism
			a. Implications of Millennialist Theology: Personal Control, Social Engagement and Scripting
		5. Conclusion and Questions
III. RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
	A. RESEARCH QUESTION
	B. HYPOTHESIS
	C. THE PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
	D. THE NATURE OF THE STUDY AND THE SUITABILITY OF A QUALITATIVE APPROACH
	E. THE DATA COLLECTION METHOD:  FOCUS GROUPS
	F. OVERVIEW OF SAMPLING AND RECRUITMENT PROCESS
	G. FOCUS GROUPS: PARTICIPANTS, PROCESSES AND QUESTIONS
	H. DATA VALIDITY, RELIABILITY AND LIMITATIONS
		1. Generalizability
IV. RESEARCH FINDINGS
	A. INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY OF FINDINGS
		1. Threat/Efficacy Levels
			a. Threat Susceptibility
		2. Overview of Findings
		3. Inconsistencies
		4. Relation of Findings to the Literature
		5. Exceptions
			a. Threat Severity
		6. Overview of Findings
		7. Relation of Findings to the Literature
			a. Response Efficacy
		8. Overview of Findings
		9. Relation of Findings to the Literature
			a. Self-Efficacy
		10. Overview of Findings
		11. Relation of Findings to the Literature
		12. Relation of Findings to the Literature
	B. OVERALL PREPAREDNESS MOTIVATION AND THE ROLE OF RELIGIOSITY
		1. Overview of Findings
		3. Relation of Findings to the Literature
	C.  CONCLUSION
V. CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
	A. MILLENNIALISM, SELF-EFFICACY AND DISASTER RESILIENCE
		1. Significance of This Thesis
		2. Recommendations for Future Study
LIST OF REFERENCES
INITIAL DISTRIBUTION LIST
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 1

Calhoun: The NPS Institutional Archive

DSpace Repository

Theses and Dissertations 1. Thesis and Dissertation Collection, all items

2011-12

The perfect storm : the religious apocalyptic

imagination and personal disaster preparedness

Albertazzi, Anne Marie.

Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School

http://hdl.handle.net/10945/10721

Page 2

NAVAL

POSTGRADUATE
SCHOOL


MONTEREY, CALIFORNIA






THESIS


Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited

THE PERFECT STORM: THE RELIGIOUS
APOCALYPTIC IMAGINATION AND PERSONAL

DISASTER PREPAREDNESS


by


Anne Marie Albertazzi


December 2011


Thesis Advisor: Rodrigo Nieto-Gomez
Second Reader: Anders Strindberg

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gradual and universal conversion to Christianity (Robbins & Palmer, 1997, p. 9; Cox,

1995, p. 289), which is accomplished in great part through assiduous preparatory efforts

by Christian believers, who organize both socially and politically to build the ideal

Christian civilization (Cox, 1995, pp. 298–290, Bock et al., 1999, p. 283, Bloesch 1978,

p. 237, Virkler & Ayayo, 2007, p. 178, Robbins & Palmer, 1997, p. 9, Shupe, 1997, p.

196–7; Almond, Appleby & Sivan, 2003, p. 69). Once the Church has succeeded in

transforming the world into a fully Christian society, the reign of perfect peace begins on

earth, to be followed by a seamless transition into eternal unity with God (Virkler &

Ayayo, 2007, p. 178, Bock et al., 1999, p. 283, Cox, 1995, p. 289). As such,

postmillennialism does not project an apocalyptic or catastrophic end in the way that the

premillennial narrative does. Rather than reaching out to caution fellow humans of

imminent end, postmillennial energies are spent toward improving affairs in current

society and mending failed institutions (McMinn, 2001, p. 211).

In postmillennial eschatology, church-building efforts figure prominently into the

triumphal progression of events (Bock et al., 1999, p. 305; Robbins & Palmer, 1997, p.

9). As such, the postmillennial narrative tends to foster both empowerment and

obligation to prepare the way for Christ’s reign by creating an improved earthly existence

in the here and now (Cox, 1995, p. 289, Almond, Appleby & Sivan, 2003, p. 69). Unlike

catastrophic millennialists, postmillennialists take a long and measured view of the end,

being less likely to rush to activism when world events seem unsettling (McMinn, 2001,

p. 212). As one theologian states, “the Lord’s glorious return occurs after an era of

‘millennial’ conditions,” and therefore “the postmillennialist confidently proclaims in a

unique way that history is ‘His story’” (Bock et al., 1999, p. 14, emphasis in original).

Not only is political and social activism useful, it is required in order to bring about

universal conversion (Bock et al., 1999, p. 283, Almond, Appleby & Sivan, 2003, p. 69).

Postmillennialist views can be found among mainline and moderate protestant

denominations (McMinn, 2001, p. 211).

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4. Amillennialism

Theologians generally agree that amillennialists, like postmillennialists, place the

second coming of Christ at the end of the thousand-year reign on earth. In

amillennialism, however, the thousand year reign has already been initiated with the

death and resurrection of Christ and will be made fully apparent at the second coming of

Christ (Walls, 2008, p. 13). Unlike their counterparts, amillennialists believe that the

church plays no active role in the thousand-year reign, serving only as a “faithful

witness” (Bock et al., 1999, p. 306), and the millennium is a figurative span of time “in

the hearts of believers” that elapses between Christ’s first and second coming (Virkler &

Ayayo, 2007, p. 178). For Amillennialists, biblical prophesy is interpreted

metaphorically and without particular adherence to linear time (Virkler & Ayayo, 2007,

p. 178; Bock et al., 1999, p. 287). In fact, the teaching sets no particular milestones

leading up to the final crossing into eternity, and provides no role for the church to aid the

process; it is entirely dependent on divine will and chronology (Bock et al., 1999, p. 306).

In this sense, amillennialist attitudes toward end times occupy the middle ground between

pessimism and optimism (McMinn, 2001, p. 209). Amillennialism can be found in

Christian denominations including Anglican, Lutheran, Orthodox, Reformed, Roman

Catholic, and some Baptists (Robinson, 2009)

Grenz (1992) has used the terms “optimism,” “pessimism” and “realism” to

describe the way postmillennialists, premillennialists and amillennialists, respectively,

view their life purpose and role in society (pp. 175–-195). In fact, these distinctions are

common among theological and sociological researchers of biblical prophesy. These

distinctions, however, are broad and do not reflect the complex variations that occur

within churches and denominations. Nevertheless, the literature in this section reveals

the ways in which millennialist doctrines might influence assessment of both personal

risk and the value of personal preparedness when it comes to major catastrophes.

a. Implications of Millennialist Theology: Personal Control, Social
Engagement and Scripting

As with the preceding section, the majority of research aimed at religious

groups in the United States appears to be on Christian denominations, particularly

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Wallenius, C. (2001). Why do people sometime fail when adapting to danger? A
theoretical discussion from a psychological perspective. International journal of
mass emergencies and disasters 19(2), pp. 145–180.

Walls, J. L. (Ed.) (2008). The Oxford Handbook of Eschatology (Kindle Edition). New
York: Oxford University Press.

Warren, M. (2010). The coming of christ's kingdom: The end-times and the triumph of
the gospel. Retrieved July 17, 2011 at http://www.christianciv.com

Weber, T. P. (2008). Millennialism. In Walls, J.L., (Ed.). The Oxford Handbook of
Eschatology (Kindle Edition). New York: Oxford University Press.

Whalen, R. K. (2000). Dispensationalism. In Landes, R. A. (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of
Millennialism and Millennial Movements. New York: Routledge.

Wilcox, C. (1994). Premillennialists at the millennium: Some reflections on the Christian
right in the twenty-first century. Sociology of Religion 55(3), 243–261.

Wilson, B. (1963). Millennialism in comparative perspective (Review article).
Comparative studies in society and history 6(1), pp. 93–114.

Wohlberg, S. (2008). Saved from Wrath? Retrieved September 14, 2011 at
http://www.whitehorsemedia.com/articles/?d=48

Wohlberg, S. (2008). Time line of final events. Retrieved September 14, 2011 at
http://www.whitehorsemedia.com/articles/?d=3

Wohlberg, S. (2008). Tsunami: A Sign of the End? Retrieved September 14, 2011 at
http://www.whitehorsemedia.com/articles/?d=32

Wojcik, Daniel (1997). The end of the world as we know it: Faith, fatalism and
apocalypse in America. New York: New York University Press.

White House (11 May, 2010). Press briefing by Press Secretary Robert Gibbs and FEMA
Administrator Craig Fugate. Retrieved October 28, 2010 from
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/press-briefing-press-secretary-robert-
gibbs-and-fema-administrator-craig-fugate

Yamane, D. (2007). Beyond beliefs: Religion and the sociology of religion in America.
Social compass 54(1), pp. 33–48.








http://www.christianciv.com/
http://www.whitehorsemedia.com/articles/?d=48
http://www.whitehorsemedia.com/articles/?d=3
http://www.whitehorsemedia.com/articles/?d=32
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/press-briefing-press-secretary-robert-gibbs-and-fema-administrator-craig-fugate
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/press-briefing-press-secretary-robert-gibbs-and-fema-administrator-craig-fugate

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INITIAL DISTRIBUTION LIST

1. Defense Technical Information Center
Ft. Belvoir, Virginia


2. Dudley Knox Library
Naval Postgraduate School
Monterey, California


3. Rodrigo Nieto-Gomez
Naval Postgraduate School
Monterey, California


4. Anders Strindberg
Naval Postgraduate School
Monterey, California


5. Administrator John S. Pistole
U.S. Transportation Security Administration
Arlington, Virginia


6. Deputy Administrator Gale Rossides
U.S. Transportation Security Administration
Arlington, Virginia


7. Assistant Administrator Sean Byrne
U.S. Transportation Security Administration
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8. Assistant Administrator Chris McLaughlin
U.S. Transportation Security Administration
Arlington, Virginia

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