ALostSoul

The Church in Europe

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Hey all, so I have been considering going to college and studying abroad in Europe. I was wondering if there were any countries that had a strong church presence, especially eastern Europe or Scandinavia. I am pretty open as far as where for the culture or living conditions, but I was just seeing where may be best. Also, I wanted to see if there was anywhere with more sisters in the area ;) Overall, just looking for suggestions

 

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The furthest east I've been has been Greece and Romania in Europe itself.  In those areas, you'll need to be in one of the LARGER cities typically to find a ward.  If you search on the LDS website it can show you where the wards are.  The number of wards in an area is a good indicator of how many active members are in that area.  In smaller cities there may be no ward close by.  The smaller the town or more rural the area you get, the harder it will be to find a ward.

Good Luck.

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Do you have the right to work in any country? I know someone who had grandparents from the Netherlands, she took a school term there and was able to swing an amazing job! It was crucial that she had the right to work there. Sometimes being a foreigner can be a real plus. Australia has easier immigration for young people. Just a thought. 

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All I can add is that if you don't already speak the native language where you're going, you might want to choose a place where English is commonly taught - e.g. in Germany (and Austria), at least in the large cities, it's common for people to know English (don't even ask, some consider it insulting if you ask, it's just assumed); but in Budapest, pretty much no one knew English.  We got by OK in Prague (the people there are really nice, and seemed to know enough English for it to work).  But of course, I visited major cities - it will be different in small towns / villages.

And I agree about finding the church - large cities, yes, more rural areas will be harder (but then, most universities with exchange programs will be in larger cities).

With the exception of long winters (and depending on where in Eastern Europe you mean), I would choose Scandinavia over Eastern Europe every time.  Helsinki and Stockholm are both nice places (the only parts of Scandinavia I visited).

Oh, if there's a US Embassy in the city (i.e. if it's the country's capital), there's a fair chance of finding an English-speaking branch of the church.

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I am pretty interested in learning different languages and would learn at least the basics of the language wherever I go, but was looking at more english plenty countries. I am not supper picky about what living situations are like. But it is a big thing for the church having a presence there.

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Guest MormonGator

Europe is incredibly secular. Those who are openly religious are thought of to be sort of backward and old fashioned. The language/culture study might be interesting, but you also might be in for a rude awakening to many parts of their society. 

Edited by MormonGator

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34 minutes ago, ALostSoul said:

I am pretty interested in learning different languages and would learn at least the basics of the language wherever I go, but was looking at more english plenty countries. I am not supper picky about what living situations are like. But it is a big thing for the church having a presence there.

The poorer the living conditions, the less likely the people speak English (FYI).

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Guest MormonGator
10 minutes ago, zil said:

The poorer the living conditions, the less likely the people speak English (FYI).

I've heard the same thing.

I think we (Americans) have a romantic view of Europe sometimes. Oh, the history, the culture-so much better than here (and it is, partially) but in reality Europe has serious problems and it's a huge culture shock to Americans. 

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On 3/30/2017 at 10:12 PM, ALostSoul said:

Hey all, so I have been considering going to college and studying abroad in Europe. I was wondering if there were any countries that had a strong church presence, especially eastern Europe or Scandinavia. I am pretty open as far as where for the culture or living conditions, but I was just seeing where may be best. Also, I wanted to see if there was anywhere with more sisters in the area ;) Overall, just looking for suggestions

No. No place in Europe has what I would call a "strong Church presence". Religion in general is ridiculed and even vilified in much of Europe. I love Europe, but I would be hesitant to send my child to study there, unless perhaps they lived with a family I knew and trusted.

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Guest MormonGator
4 minutes ago, Vort said:

Religion in general is ridiculed and even vilified in much of Europe.

I said the same thing a few posts ago. Plagiarist. 

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1 minute ago, MormonGator said:

I said the same thing a few posts ago. Plagiarist. 

Guilty as charged. I have been known to plagiarize the sacrament prayers when officiating at the sacrament table. I'm incorrigible.

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Guest MormonGator
3 minutes ago, Vort said:

Guilty as charged.

What are you, a writer for the New Republic now?!

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I think your best bet would be England, of which Joseph Smith said something along the lines of the blood of Ephraim flows rich in that land. If you have access to a church almanac, you can read a brief history of the church in every country in the world, along with its population, the number of members, the percentage of the population who are members of the church and the number of stakes and wards, 

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On 4/6/2017 at 3:11 PM, ALostSoul said:

I am pretty interested in learning different languages and would learn at least the basics of the language wherever I go, but was looking at more english plenty countries. I am not supper picky about what living situations are like. But it is a big thing for the church having a presence there.

I'm interested to know what specific benefits you personally anticipate by studying abroad. What foreign language do you already know how to speak? 

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On 4/6/2017 at 5:11 PM, ALostSoul said:

I am pretty interested in learning different languages and would learn at least the basics of the language wherever I go, but was looking at more english plenty countries. I am not supper picky about what living situations are like. But it is a big thing for the church having a presence there.

Metro Manila and Metro Cebu in the Philippines have a fast-growing LDS community.  Metro Manila is one of only 2 cities outside of the US that will soon have 2 temples (it already has one, the other one got announced last General Conference).  Cebu has a temple as well.

English is the medium of instruction in schools so even if you don't speak the language, most people speak and understand passable English.  I prefer Cebu over Manila because it is a more business-like environment, has fantastic beaches, have very hospitable people, and although it is very crowded, it's not as crowded as Manila.  Note, Manila and Cebu have different native languages - they're as different to each other as English is to Spanish.

Although, there are a whole lot more good universities in Metro Manila than there are in Cebu.  University of San Carlos, University of San Jose-Recolletos, Cebu Institute of Technology are good universities for Engineering and general college courses.  There are other smaller colleges for things such as Law or Medicine that are also good.  In Manila, the University of the Philippines is top notch.

Edited by anatess2

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What exactly do you want from your experience?  

Why not live where the church only has a branch, where  you can have a great opportunity to learn the language and culture while helping out in the branch.  I think you can learn more about yourself and the world if you go somewhere you have to roll up your sleeves and pitch in.

One final advice == stay away from exPats.  If you associate with Americans, etc, you might as well stay home.  Get to the point where you ONLY speak the native language, even if you have to work on it.  If someone approaches you speaking in English, respond by speaking broken, with heavy accented English.  :cool:

Edited by cdowis

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