They make an interesting statement:
"The study found that white and African-American adolescents generally had fewer symptoms of depressive at high levels of religious participation. But for some Latino and Asian-American adolescents, attending church more often was actually affecting their mood in a negative way."The article uses "religious participation" and "church [attendance]" interchangeably, and the religion (Christian by denomination, Jewish, Muslim, Wicca, etc.) is not specified.
Based on the quotes from Richard Petts, I assume the authors are atheists; so I don't expect them to understand the notion of true and false religion, doctrine, etc.
As an extreme example, if "religious participation" included human sacrifice, it's understandable that the participants might be prone to depression... Of course, the notion that participation in true religion (rather than hopeless, false religion) would divide into ethnic groups is just silly.
But I am not trying to analyze this study point-by-point. I am looking for a more general trend among atheist scholars. And that trend is, "religion is a boolean - you have religion or not, and they are all interchangeable" and "we must examine religions based on the results provided to their adherents". The first is supported by my first part. For the second:
"The study shows that we need to consider the broader social aspects of institutions such as religion on an individual’s well being, both good and bad."For the atheist, religion is a social structure to be considered and chosen based on the effects (or rejected outright). The notion of true or false is ignored (or often, assumed false).