Last week’s opening of a McDonald’s in a Vatican-owned property just around the corner from St. Peter’s Square has been both welcomed and decried by Rome’s locals. Some Romans have expressed joy on social media at the new restaurant, noting that the area around the Vatican is filled with overpriced restaurants catering to tourists, and suggesting the McDonald’s could actually be more discreet. Others have worried about changes to the area’s cultural identity. Cardinal Elio Sgreccia, president emeritus of the Pontifical Academy for Life, was a vocal critic ahead of the opening, calling it a “controversial, perverse decision to say the least.” Dubbed by some as “McVatican,” the new restaurant is located in a Vatican property in Rome, at the intersection of the Borgo Pio and Via del Mascheriny, just a few minutes’ walk from St. Peter’s Basilica.
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