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The archdiocese of Barcelona intends to close 160 parishes

The Archdiocese of Barcelona intends to close 160 out of 208 existing parishes. The remaining 48 will become centres for "pastoral communities", according to the Spanish media. Churches that will lose their parish status will also gradually be closed.


According to media outlets, the projected closures are linked to the  “decades of nationalism” in the local Catalan Church. The churches have also been overcome by pandemic constraints, resulting in a “dramatic drop in income” for the Archdiocese.

Initially, it was intended to keep the former parish churches open until the retirement age of the current parish priest, but this could jeopardize the “market opportunity” of selling the properties.

Catalonia, whose capital city is Barcelona, ​​has the smallest percentage of people declaring themselves Catholic in Spain – 56.6 %,  of whom only one in five attends Mass every Sunday. It is here also where fewer people baptise their children, organise that they  receive First Holy Communion or promote sacramental marriage.  Barcelona has the lowest number of new vocations to the priesthood.


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