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Resources for Students: What to Expect

Religion and Spirituality in France

France has a particularly complex intersection of religion and culture. Do some research about religious life in France before you go, and while there, keep an open mind about religious practices. In doing this, you'll be able to gain a better understanding of your own belief system(s) and an increased familiarity of others'. Exposure to different belief systems while living and in France may prompt questions about your own religious identity and may cause you to reflect more about your religious or spiritual practice.

Here are some questions to consider:

  • Will you be part of a religious majority or a religious minority in France?
  • If you are planning to practice your religion, are there any places of worship you can visit? If not, how will you plan to practice your religion?
  • How tolerant is France about religion and spirituality?
  • How are atheists or agnostics perceived?
  • Will it be safe for you to wear religious symbols and/or clothing?
  • Is there separation of church and state in France?
  • Are there laws about religion?
  • If you have religious dietary restrictions, will they be accommodated in France?
  • Are you open to living in a household with a different religious background than yours?
  • Are there any religious holidays that are celebrated as public events in France?

Here is a list of resources to get you started. They will provide additional insight and we highly encourage you to check them out, as well as other resources that are available on the internet.

Adapted from Brown University.