From the November 2010 magazine.

Alcoholism At Large

Clergy a common resource for people battling alcoholism

About 15 percent of people seeking recovery from alcoholism turn to clergy members for support, a University of Michigan study finds.

A 2010 survey of 1,910 individuals with alcohol-related problems found that while many people seek help from clergy, most do so in conjunction with professional services. Just 0.5 percent sought to recover through counseling with a priest or other clergy member alone.

"Clergy are in a unique position to notice changes in behavior over time," said study co-author Brian Perron. "Their roles as senior leaders of churches, their embodiment of...