Luxembourg became an independent entity in 963, when Siegfried, count of the Ardennes, exchanged his lands for a small but strategically placed Roman castle near the Alzette River. This castle, named Lucilinburhuc (“Little Fortress”), became the cradle of Luxembourg. Later Spain and Austria alternately controlled Luxembourg until 1815, when after the Napoleonic Wars it became a grand duchy and was placed under the rule of King William I of the Netherlands. Luxembourg was part of Belgium for several years, then fell under the control of Prussia. After being overrun by German armies in both World Wars, it later became a sovereign nation and an original member of the United Nations, strengthening its position in international affairs. Luxembourg is part of the European Union.
The Pentecostal message first came to Luxembourg in the 1970s through a German pastor from Trier, Germany. He established a coffeehouse ministry in Luxembourg City, the capital. With the help of volunteers, he established a church of about 50 believers. However, that work in Luxembourg gradually declined until the arrival of David and Phyllis Porter, the first Assemblies of God missionaries to Luxembourg. They joined with British Assemblies of God missionaries John and Anne Leese in opening La Rencontre (“The Encounter”), a Christian coffeehouse in the capital.
The Movement Today
Nearly 71 percent of Luxembourg’s population claim to be Christian (predominantly Roman Catholic). A small number of Muslims, Buddhists, folk religionists, Hindus, and Jews make up the rest of the population. Regular church services, coffeehouse ministries, Teen Challenge, crusades, weekly evangelism efforts, and modern media ministries comprise the work of Pentecostal believers in Luxembourg today. Much of the Pentecostal church in Luxembourg is made up of expatriates living in the country. Few nationals are Pentecostal because the general population is largely suspicious of non-Catholic believers. Much work needs to be done; the people are economically wealthy, but spiritually destitute.
The Assemblies of God in Luxembourg report the following statistics: two national ministers and two churches with 198 members and adherents.
Additional Facts About Luxembourg
Capital: Luxembourg City
Area: 998 square miles
Urbanization: 91 percent
Government: constitutional monarchy
Languages: Luxembourgish, Portuguese, French, Italian, and Belgian
Agriculture: grains, potatoes, wine grapes, dairy and livestock products
Industry: steel, chemicals, banking, engineering, and metal products