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Introducing...Runar Sögaard

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18:23 CEST+02:00
Introducing...is The Local's weekly look at the high priests of Swedish celebrity. This week in a belated Easter celebration, we jump into the pews with socialite preacher Runar Sögaard

Who is he and why is he famous?

Runar Sögaard - more commonly known as Runar - combines life as a Pentecostal preacher with his tireless duties as a Stockholm socialite. Explaining his hectic schedule, he once said that if Jesus were alive today he would hang out at Spy Bar.

What's Spy Bar?

You really do have the memory of a dipsomaniac gnat. It's an inner city watering hole for the in-crowd. And presumably they are all despicable sinners, which is why people like Jesus and Runar are needed there. It's a sort of calling.

Well, it sounds divine. But what does Runar do when he's not at this Spy Bar place?

He shoots deer from his bedroom window. Or at least he did in 1995. This rather eccentric practice led to him having his hunting licence revoked, but he later got it back.

Oh good. No more licence trouble then?

Well, there was actually. He was caught speeding in 1998 and had his driver's licence taken away.

Sounds like a tough period for the preacher man.

It was. And it got worse. His 10 year long marriage to Carola , the Eurovision Song Contest star, went off the rails in 2000. They later divorced.

That's rough.

Yes, but that's not the end of it. Some extreme organizations called for him to be executed a while back when he referred to the prophet Muhammad as a "confused paedophile". He later issued an apology to all Muslims.

Goodness. Old Runar doesn't make things easy for himself, does he?

He certainly doesn't. Another example of which is when he claimed to be spiritual advisor to a slew of major stars. But people like Sting, Robert Downey Jr and Matt LeBlanc all denied being his customers.

Oh dear, how embarrassing. Hopefully things are going a bit better for him now.

They are indeed. He recently heeded the call of his homeland and has agreed to sit on the jury for the Miss Norway beauty pageant.

He is a true martyr, isn't he?

Yes, he is positively saintly. And as if to prove the point, he peddles a line of jewellery called Miracles 4 Me.

It's always nice to have something that miraculously rakes in the cash. But what would he do if placed in a real dilemma? Say, for example, if he was asked to wed a couple of these Spy Bar people naked on a beach.

Where's the dilemma? As a matter of fact, he is facing that decision. Remember Bingo Rimér ?

Sweden's answer to Hugh Hefner? Of course I do.

Great, the haze is lifting. Well, Bingo wants to reaffirm his vows with his good wife Angelica and has said that he would like Runar to do the honours. The glamour photographer has however stipulated that he intends to marry on a beach and in the nude. Guests would naturally also come dressed in their birthday suits?

And would the minister also be expected to defrock?

But of course. There is no news yet as to whether Runar is going to perform the ceremony. But by all accounts he is back out and about with the glamorous and good. Preaching to the converted.

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