Want to learn more about Italy’s religion? Read on for facts and info on the religion followed by the masses of Italy…
Religion is a very important aspect of the Italian way of life. It would be impossible to understand the true nature of Italy without first understanding the primitive roles that religion has to play in the life of the locals.
A visitor to Italy will be able to see the landscape dotted with hundreds of churches, monasteries and shrines. Not only are these structures monuments of architecture, but they are also a symbol of the faith followed by the people of Italy. One of the things that differentiates the many historical churches of Italy from the Renaissance church buildings found all over Europe, is the fact that these churches have not been transformed into museums. Rather, they are active churches where congregations of parishes are still held today.
The Italian city of Rome has served as the center for the Roman Catholic religion of Christianity for thousands of years. It is considered to be the eternal city that is held in high esteem by the more than 1 billion Roman Catholics population of the world. Many Roman Catholics around the world consider a trip to the various churches of Rome to be a pilgrimage in itself.
The highest religious authority of Christianity sits in the Vatican in Rome. As the Pope, he is not only the supreme leader of the Catholic Church, but he is also the bishop of Rome as well as the successor of Rome’s first ever bishop that was St. Peter himself. An interesting thing to note is that the particular title given to the Pope of Christianity actually predates Christianity and goes back all the way to the originals of Rome.
The thousands of holy sites that are scattered across the topography of Italy have been venerated since the pagan times even before Christians set foot on Italian soil. A large majority of the Christian churches that are found in Italy are actually ancient Roman temples and shrines belonging to ancient mysterious religions that have been converted to Christian churches.
The larger proportion of the Italian population belongs to the Roman Catholic faith. However, the role of religion in the daily lives of the Italian people has greatly diminished with the passage of time.
This is why most of the monasteries and churches are relatively empty on a daily basis. However, during the festive seasons and feast days there is literally no place to step inside the church buildings because they are full of masses that profess to this faith.
Today the Vatican along with the many tombs and shrines of Catholic saints including the likes of St. Francis of Assisi continue to attract thousands of Christian pilgrims from all around the world. The fate of the Italian masses is represented in the form of these religious structures that have been preserved through centuries and stand as prominent symbols of the Roman Catholic faith.