• Sweden edition
 
Moderates signal break with Church of Sweden

Moderates signal break with Church of Sweden

Published: 26 Aug 2011 14:02 GMT+02:00
Updated: 26 Aug 2011 14:02 GMT+02:00

"This is a step taken with respect both to the many conservatives who have a religious commitment and the decision to separate church and state," the Moderate Party wrote in a statement on Friday.

While the party executive has taken a formal decision, the party underlines that "it is very important that those who wish to continue to represent moderate ideas in the church's work are enabled to do so".

This sentiment is supported by party secretary Sofia Arkelsten.

"The Moderate (party) is not standing in the national church elections, but moderates can!" Arkelsten wrote in a Twitter post on Friday.

The party's church consultation group has been given the task of developing a new platform for its commitment to the Church of Sweden, while underlining that there is no longer a religious association within the party.

Elections to General Synod of the Church of Sweden take place every four years and the next elections are due in 2013. Since the 1930s "nominating groups" have typically been directly affiliated with national political parties.

The Moderates are the first major party to take the step for secular reasons, although the Left and Green parties have long operated a system where members are free to form separate associations to compete in the elections.

Furthermore there are also groups with roots in the so-called Free Churches which generally encompasses candidates from the Liberal and Christian Democrat parties.

All Church of Sweden members aged above 16-years-old are eligible to vote for nominating groups and direct elections are held to national national (Kyrkomötet), Diocese (Stift), Community (Samfällighet) and Parish (Församling) assemblies.

Until 2000 the church was considered a state church but on January 1st of that year this relationship was changed with a formal separation of church and state.

With over 6.6 million baptised members, the Church of Sweden is the largest Lutheran church in the world.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

14:40 August 26, 2011 by nyh2o
way to go moderates!!
15:20 August 26, 2011 by conboy
Interesting why this change now and would this new born conservative scepticism extend itself to the Head of State? The conditions of inheriting the title of head of state are predicated on membership of the church which the moderates are withdrawing from. I wonder whats really going on here?
17:07 August 26, 2011 by rfmann
Isn't it slightly weird that political parties would directly engage in elections in religious sects to begin with? Just sayin'...
18:27 August 26, 2011 by conboy
Maybe as the social democrats drift more and more to the centre right on economic issues the moderates are trying to move slightly to the centre on social issues? Don't know just guessing but the change raises interesting constitutional questions regarding how they politically regard the church whom the head of state has to be a member of according to the Swedish Constitution. Are they for membership of an institution which effectively supplies the head of state or are they not?
16:50 August 27, 2011 by Larry Thrash
If religion is to be out of politics, then politics should be out of religion.
15:53 August 28, 2011 by conboy
religion and politics are inseperable they are part of the human condition however tragic the outcome.
08:27 August 29, 2011 by Lavaux
Religion in politics isn't the issue. Futility is.

The Church of Sweden has so abandoned its traditional roots that it's essentially become a unitarian sect engaged in the cultural businesses of maintaining landmarks and hosting ceremonies. There's no reason for any Moderate to associate with the Church of Sweden because there's no there there. It's an empty husk without moment or meaning.
17:34 August 31, 2011 by Kublai
And this has nothing to do with the fact that there are now members of the Muslim Brotherhood in the Swedish government and Moderates party?
04:34 September 5, 2011 by sjuttiosjusköterskorpåsjukhuset
Lavaux: I wholeheartedly agree with you. I am a person with English as my first language. I would like to perfect what you wrote to the following below because I feel so strongly that what you wrote is so accurate. I am a firm supporter of the Moderate party in Sweden. If you do not agree to what I've rewrote, please indicate so:

The Church of Sweden has so abandoned its traditional roots that it has essentially become a unitarian sect engaged in the cultural business of maintaining landmarks and hosting ceremonies. There is no reason for any Moderate to associate themself with the Church of Sweden because there is nothing there: The Church of Sweden is an empty husk without momentum and meaning.
Today's headlines
National
Swedish town 'like Venice' after heavy rains
Photo: TT

Swedish town 'like Venice' after heavy rains

Torrential rains in western Sweden have left some towns submersed as water levels have risen to 1.5 metres above normal for the season with forecasts indicating that is worse to come. READ  

Ebola crisis
Sweden pledges new aid to UN Ebola fund
Photo: TT

Sweden pledges new aid to UN Ebola fund

Sweden has offered a new sizeable contribution to the fund set up by UN chief Ban K-moon to fight the Ebola outbreak. READ  

Society
'Dark forces' target refugee hunting scheme
Photo: Lars-Göran Thuresson/Älgriket

'Dark forces' target refugee hunting scheme

The Swedish hunting association runs a project to encourage young asylum-seekers to learn about hunting, a move which has proved controversial among some far right groups. READ  

Business & Money
American sales squeeze Ericsson profits
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg presents the third-quarter earnings report at the company's headquarters in Kista. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT

American sales squeeze Ericsson profits

Swedish telecoms equipment maker Ericsson reported a decline in net profit in the third quarter despite an increase in sales, boosted by business in emerging markets. READ  

Interview
'Too many concerts feel the same'
Sofar hosts secret gigs in Swedish apartments. Photo: Sofar

'Too many concerts feel the same'

Kattis Bjork founded Stockholm's secret gig scene - Sofar - a year ago. The Local caught up with her as she prepared to celebrate the project's anniversary this weekend and revealed the concept will spread to other Swedish cities in 2015. READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Sweden calls off suspect submarine search
Ships are returning to shore in Sweden. Photo: TT

Sweden calls off suspect submarine search

The core search for a suspected foreign vessel in Swedish waters has been called off. The armed forces said they remained convinced foreign underwater activity had taken place but had not identified an intruder. READ  

Business & Money
US and Japan fuel surge for Volvo trucks
Ed Carbaugh prepares to install parts on a truck engine on an assembly line at Volvo Trucks' powertrain manufacturing facility in Hagerstown, Maryland, March 2014. Photo: Patrick Semansky/AP

US and Japan fuel surge for Volvo trucks

Sweden's Volvo, the world's second-largest maker of trucks, said Friday it saw a spike in profits in the third quarter, boosted by thriving sales in the US and Japanese markets. READ  

Inspectors attacked at rogue doc’s surgery
Cigarettes and beer photo: Shutterstock

Inspectors attacked at rogue doc’s surgery

Inspectors who were sent to shut down a doctor’s surgery in Gothenburg were physically attacked and fled the premises to get help from the police. READ  

Police turn Swede’s vodka into water
A Swede loads a car with alcohol in northern Germany. File photo: Drago Prvulovic/TT

Police turn Swede’s vodka into water

Swedish police say they will pay a man 16,000 kronor ($2,200) in damages after much of the alcohol they confiscated from him was stolen, while many of the bottles they returned were filled with water. READ  

Diplomacy
US to get first female ambassador in Sweden
File photo: Athena Center for Leadership Studies

US to get first female ambassador in Sweden

The United States Embassy in Stockholm is set to get its first female ambassador after the White House announced it was nominating the Iranian-American ex-investment banker Azita Raji to take over from Mark Brzezinski. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Lifestyle
What's On in Sweden: October 24th - 31st
Gallery
People-watching: October 22nd
Gallery
In Pictures: Prince Carl Philip and Sofia Hellqvist
Lifestyle
Eight things to love about renting a Swedish apartment
National
Vasa ship cannon blasted in Sweden
Blog updates

24 October

Editor’s blog, October 24th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Get ready to read our weekly digest of Swedish news in less than 60 seconds. The..." READ »

 

24 October

Is darkness weather? (Blogweiser) »

"I try very hard not to talk about the weather. This has come after a decade..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Sub hunt: Day-by-day
National
Sub hunt: Stockholm islanders share their fears with The Local
Sponsored Article
The best options for oversea transfers
National
Get 20% off unique Swedish homeware
National
Dentist gives free care to Roma beggars
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
Gallery
Property of the week: Malmö
Gallery
PHOTOS: 'Foreign activity' in Swedish waters
Gallery
People-watching: October 19th
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: October 17th - 24th
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
What's on in Sweden: October 10th - 17th
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Society
My Swedish Career: A French fashionista in Sweden
Society
Swede's anti-bully Facebook tale goes viral
Society
Have you seen Sweden's viral subway cancer campaign?
National
Isis: Swedes linked to Turkish prisoner swap
National
Should Swedes be banned from buying sex abroad?
Gallery
Fredrik Reinfeldt's leaving presents
National
Five Swedish TV shows you shouldn't miss
Gallery
A tool belt, a casserole, and a book. Fredrik Reinfeldt's parliament gifts
TT
Lifestyle
Top five winter festivals in Sweden
TT
National
Sami reindeer herders win mine reprieve
Gallery
Property of the Week: Gamla Enskede
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

985
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN