By: Jose Diaz and Joey Sliwinski
The Roman Catholic church is in Vatican City, Rome. 25% of Italians attend mass on a daily basis. A large number of Italians are firm believers. It is customary to dress well for mass, and it is wrong to enter mass late. In mass, shoulders and knees must be covered at all times.
Protestant and Jewish communities are also present. And there is an expanding immigrant muslim community.
Today the family structure is not as strong as it used to be. Italians are hesitant to have children and have one of the lowest birthrates in the world. They still believe in a strong sense of an extended family.
Eating in Italy
Before eating, the host must say "Buòn appetite!" before anyone can eat. Italians do not switch their forks and knives. All dishes are passed to the left. You do NOT slurp your pasta, you eat it all at once. The most honored seats in a table are at the middle of the sides, where the host or hostess usually sits.
Italians usually have a light breakfast. Their lunch is usually their heaviest meal. Then, they finish with dinner being lighter than lunch. Today, dinner tends to be the heaviest meal because Italians like to eat as a family, which is accomplished after work.
Italians are big fans of soccer. Some tend to have heart attacks, because they were watching soccer at their homes. They visit friends often in cafes, or they go there for alone time. They like to speak with their families over lunch. They also like to hang out at beaches and town squares.
There is free education for anyone who lives in Italy. Kids start their primary education at the Scuola Media for five years at the age of six. Children between eleven and fourteen attend Scuola Secondaria di Primo Grado. Then the children go to one of two Scuola Secondaria di Secondo Grado for their high school years.
April 25 is Liberation Day in Italy to celebrate the liberation of Italy from WWII. November is All Souls Day, where Italians visit the graves of dead relatives and bring them flowers. On Easter Monday, Italians go outside and have a picnic to mark the start of spring. On a Tuesday or a Thursday, Italians will extend their religious holiday for four days, so it is not bothered by Monday or Friday.