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Waldensians, Waldenses or Vaudois are names for a Christian movement of the later Middle Ages, descendants of which still exist in various regions. Over time, the denomination joined the Genevan or Reformed branch of Protestantism. About the earlier history of the Waldenses considerable uncertainty exists because of a lack of extant source material. They were persecuted as heretical in the 12th century onwards, endured near annihilation in the 17th century, and were then confronted with organized and generalized discrimination in centuries that followed. There are active congregations in Europe, South America, and North America. The contemporary and historic Waldensian spiritual heritage includes proclaiming the Gospel, serving the marginalized, promoting social justice, fostering inter-religious work, and advocating respect for religious diversity and freedom of conscience. Modern Waldensians are gathered in the Waldensian Evangelical Church.

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