All posts tagged: neopagans

Ex-Catholics in Rome reconnect with roots, spirituality in paganism

Ex-Catholics in Rome reconnect with roots, spirituality in paganism

VATICAN CITY (RNS) — Disillusioned by their experiences in Catholicism, some Romans are turning to paganism and finding a connection to their roots through worshipping the gods of antiquity, whom they see as more welcoming than the church. “Rome is pagan,” Pope Francis told members of the Roman clergy during a closed-door meeting Jan. 14, when he urged them to consider the city a mission territory. Asked about the pope’s surprising words a few weeks later, the head of the department for catechesis of the Diocese of Rome, the Rev. Andrea Camillini, admitted: “Rome is at the same time pagan and the city of the pope: It’s a paradoxical city.” The number of practicing Catholics in Italy has plummeted after the COVID-19 lockdowns to an all-time low. The Italian National Institute of Statistics found that only 19% of Italians were practicing Catholics in 2022, compared with 36% in the previous 10 years. The number of people who “never practice” their faith has doubled to 31% in the historically Catholic country. While the church grapples with …