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Religion and Spirituality Abroad

Religion is an important aspect of many cultures, and study abroad can expose you to a variety of different belief systems. Whether you practice a religion or not, it is important to understand your beliefs in the context of your future host country’s religious culture and the role religion plays in daily life.
We recommend these tips when abroad:
  • Research your destination’s religious tolerance levels.
  • If you plan to worship abroad, research availability of worship locations for your faith and the safety of these locations.
  • Use the local religion as a lens to the local culture. Some cultures may welcome you to attend local services, even if you do not believe in the faith.
  • Know the local laws concerning religion and, especially, as this relates to anything that may appear to be proselytizing. In some cultures, for instance, even a religious necklace could be considered proselytizing.
  • Demonstrate respect- wear appropriate attire, show proper respect to icons, etc.  If you do not know what is appropriate, ask. 

Additional resources:
Religious Diversity Abroad - Diversity Abroad
Religious and Spiritual Group Resources Abroad - George Washington University
International Religious Freedom Report - U.S. Department of State
Guide to Finding a Buddhist Center or Organization - World Buddhist Directory
Christian International Church Finder
Christianity Today International
Guide to Finding Mosques and Islamic Institutions – Salatomatic
Halal Travel - Halal Trip
Resources for Muslim Students - Have Halal Will Travel
IslamiCity - is a source of Islamic information and a large e-Muslim community

IslamicFinder - resources for navigating daily life
Federation of Student Islamic Societies

See resources for Jewish Students Abroad in a separate TAB.

With these resources and some preparation, we hope we can help you build a rewarding study abroad experience into your college degree.  We encourage you to reach out to us and start exploring where and when you might study abroad.
Please feel free to contact us to set a study abroad advising appointment at the Center for Global Engagement.  We are advising in-person at CSI and virtually via Zoom.  See our contact info here: Advising Hours.