The Catholic Church plays a fundamental role in the religious life of Luxembourgers, since the vast majority of the population belong to this religion. It has been firmly rooted in the culture of the country for over 1,500 years.
In 1840, after having been divided for centuries among a number of neighbouring dioceses, the Catholic Church in Luxembourg became an independent apostolic vicariate, in 1870 a diocese and an archdiocese in 1988. In 1985, His Holiness Pope John Paul II visited the Christians of Luxembourg.
The main Catholic places of pilgrimage are:
- The Notre-Dame Cathedral in Luxembourg during the Oktav;
- The Echternach Basilica during the Hopping Procession;
- The Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Fatima in Wiltz.
The Luxembourg Protestant Church was founded in 1952, when the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) was set up in Luxembourg. Today, the Protestant church has several hundred members, mostly German-speaking. There are also three foreign Protestant communities in Luxembourg.
With a British community of about 5,000 living in Luxembourg, on 27 January 2003 the Luxembourg Government signed an agreement with the Anglican Church, determining the number of its ministers, who are financed by the State.
So far as concerns the Orthodox Churches, in 2003 the Luxembourg government extended its agreement with the Greek Orthodox Church, dating from 1997, to the Romanian Orthodox Church and the Serbian Orthodox Church. The Convention provides for the assumption by the Luxembourg State of responsibility for the remuneration of a priest for each religious group. A Russian Orthodox parish can also be found in Luxembourg.
The Luxembourg Jewish community has about a thousand members, that is to say between 300 and 350 families. The first traces of Jews in Luxembourg date back to the Middle Ages. In 1894 the big synagogue in rue Aldringen, Luxembourg, was built. The building, surmounted by three domes, was closed, then destroyed, by German occupiers in 1941. It was not until 1953 and 1954 that two new synagogues were inaugurated, in Avenue Monterey, Luxembourg, and rue du Canal, Esch-sur-Alzette.
Since 1992, the Muslim community of the Grand Duchy, then composed of people from Arabic-speaking countries and Iran and Pakistan, has increased dramatically as a result of intense immigration associated with the Balkan wars.