People have been living in Paris, before it was "Paris," since 4200 BC. Today the capital city of France is the most populated city of Western Europe. It counts over 2 million inhabitants and is the center of the 13 million people Paris region.
Paris has for centuries attracted many of the brightest writers, composers, artists and thinkers the world has ever known. It's obvious that Parisians love art and music-- which is both reflected in and cultivated through their many museums, theaters and opera houses. As I have walked through the city it has been amazing to see the convergence of ancient and modern cultures blend together so beautifully. I can understand why 45 million people visit La Ville-Lumière (The City of Light) annually.
Despite its nickname, this "City of Light" is a spiritually dark place where conversions tend to come along slowly through gospel witness and relationships.
The largest percent of Parisians claim to be Catholic (67.7%), but only about 10% participate in the Catholic faith regularly. The next largest group consider themselves to be non-religious (19.7%). Only around 2% of Paris is Protestant, and another 1.5% is Jewish. The fastest growing religion in Paris is Islam claiming 10% of the population.
I got the opportunity to talk with a pastor in Paris and to see how this cultural context shapes church planting: