international student life

international student

Religion: What International students need to know:

Differences, Legal protection, Religious Freedom, Practices conflicting with laws and more.

International students come to college from all corners of the world to study and learn about other peoples and cultures. Religion is one important aspect of that inter-cultural learning.

When you start college as an international student, you will be surprised to meet people of many different religions, some familiar and others completely unfamiliar to you.

In the U.S, the main religion is Christianity, which has many different sub-denominations within itself. You will find Evangelicals, Catholics, protestants, Mormons, Seventh day Adventists and many other.

While Christianity is the predominant religion, you will also find a lot of other religions practiced here. There is a large Muslim community. There are also Hindus, Sikhs, Budhists, Scientologists, Buddhists and atheists.

You will be pleased to know that in the US, there is freedom of religion and one can practice whatever religion they like. Freedom of religion is protected by law and as an international student, you should not be afraid to practice your own religion.

However, while nobody will prevent you from practicing your religion in a reasonable manner, you should avoid doing things that disturb the lives of other people who don't practice your religion. These include making noise, and doing things that may offend the sensitivities of other people.

There are also some practices permitted in some religions but are against the law. One should therefore be careful not to get in trouble while practicing their religion. Some of these illegal practices include female circumcision, polygamy, child marriage and many others.

You can easily find a church, temple or mosque in most cities in the US. To find one, just ask your international student adviser for advise. The rule of thumb when practicing your religion is to do it freely, but be aware not to break the law or the sensitivities of the local people.