Italy’s “8 per mille” religious tax

posted in: Italian lifestyle and culture, Writing | 5
Clergy on the streets near the Vatican

I have commented previously about my observations while in Italy regarding the collections taken at church. I had noticed on every occasion that during the Mass the collections consisted solely of change. Later I learned that the churches are “paid” or subsidized by the Italian government. In fact the same occurs in some other European nations.

This article by Marc Alan Di Martino explains the process in detail. I was fascinated reading it and learned a lot about how the government in Italy works.

How Italy’s “8 per mille” religious tax works.

Church of San Francesco in Caltagirone

5 Responses

  1. Ruth Rainwater

    Interesting! I think we sometimes forget that other countries don’t have the same kind of Constitution we have. We may think their laws too strict or too quaint, but they probably think the same thing about ours. It’s all a matter of perspective.

  2. Lori Samarin

    I just reviewed this with my Italian students, as part of our discussion about the Fascist Era in Italy (totally misunderstood by non Italians). Lateran agreements were made in 1929 when Mussolini signed a pact with the Holy Seat according to which, Roman Catholicism became the religion of the Italian State; this pact gave way to the Pontiff being assured sovereignty of a small, independent State, which became “ Vatican City”. As a result, the Italian State funds the Roman Catholic Church. (and Italian citizens like it this way. What people forget is that the Italian constitution is based on different principles that that of the United States constitution, so foreigners should respect those differences).

I'm always interested in your thoughts, so please leave a comment.