Are you religious? Is your family? What do you believe? These are pretty personal questions for us to be asking. You are about to experience a whole new culture and with that will be a whole new set of beliefs. Do you know what the predominant religion is in the country you are traveling to? You should look into it because chances are it won’t be like yours. Christianity is the largest religious group in the world; the next largest is Islam. In the “global village” that David Smith speaks of, 15 are non-religious. Maybe these numbers surprise you, or maybe they don’t.
Be able to speak intelligently about other religions. Most importantly, be able to listen and be open to learning. Don’t argue about local religious customs or beliefs. You don’t fully understand theirs and vice versa. Be aware when it would be best to avoid the subject and when it may be okay to have a discussion about the differences. Many countries like Germany and the United Kingdom are not as open about their religious beliefs. Consider the religion of a country as another learning experience. Go to a religious service in your new home, celebrate their festivals, take it all in. You will learn something about your faith and theirs.
a controversial topic
Religion may or may not play a significant role in your life. The best thing we can advise while abroad is to not bring up the subject. You may think that this seems irrational, but most people around the world will tell you not to get involved in religious arguments or even simple discussions on the topic. It is a deeply personal part of their lives. This may upset you if you like to discuss your faith with people. Sometimes at home that goes over well; other times it does nothing but offend people. Try to avoid religious conversations; it’s just better this way.