Religion and Spirituality

Religion and spirituality, whether practiced in an organized manner or individually, can play an important role in your host country and can be a telling glimpse into the country’s culture as a whole. You may find that religion is tightly woven into the fabric of your host country, or perhaps you may find that it is not as salient as you believe it to be. Whether or not a person practices a religion or identify with a faith background, it’s helpful to research the customs of the religions practiced,i n your country. You may encounter cultural nuances different to the religion or spiritual practice you are accustomed to practicing at home, or find that local folk traditions or beliefs influence religious or spiritual practices abroad.

If you hold certain faith beliefs at home, consider researching how your religious or spiritual practices abroad may be similar or different. Ask any on-the-ground contacts you have about how and where you can practice your faith fully and safely, as well as how you abide by the religious practices. Seeking advice from those in your faith community can also prove to be helpful in preparing to go abroad. You may find that adhering to a certain religion or beliefs system may be more or less accepted in your host country. A sense of relief or freedom may be experienced while being in another country. You may also find yourself misunderstood or frustrated in not being able to practice as freely as you are accustomed to.

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