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Swedish comic to exact TV revenge on Vatican

Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 13 Nov 2009, 16:05

Published: 13 Nov 2009 16:05 GMT+01:00

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Jonas Gardell and his Sveriges Television film team were informed this week that their permit to film in St.Peter's Basilica, or any other Catholic place of worship in Rome, to film material for his new series on Christianity, had been revoked, according to a report on the Christian website Dagen.

Gardell, who is a practising Christian, claims that it is the Swedish Catholic church bishop Anders Arborelius who is behind the decision to block his TV team, arguing that Jesus would never have excluded them, or anyone else.

Arborelius' spokesperson, Maria Hasselgren, has confirmed that the bishop has not supplied Gardell and SVT with the required references to gain entry to the churches but denies that there has been any contact with the Vatican.

"He has said simply that he can not support Jonas Gardell filming in St.Peter's. It has nothing to do with his sexuality, but due to his unsubstantiated criticism of the Catholic Church," Hasselgren told Sveriges Radio's (SR) "Studio Ett" programme referring to Gardel's homosexuality.

"He (Jonas Gardell) is not prepared to conduct an objective debate and so it would be very strange to admit him to our holy places. Would the Jews admit representatives from the (far-right) Sweden Democrats to report from the synagogue?"

Gardell has responded to his exclusion by writing in a new feature in his programme in which he will address the subject of the "exclusionary Jesus" and will instead film from the from the steps of the basilica.

Story continues below…

Gardell, who is a honorary doctor in theology from Lund University and the author of a recent book entitled "About Jesus" (Om Jesus), explained to SR that as he understands the situation the withdrawal of the permits also encompass a ban on him personally entering any of Rome's churches.

"It is very upsetting, it means in practice that they have imposed a form of "bull of excommunication" against me."

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

18:04 November 13, 2009 by Grippen
So what's the point of the article?

Even being heathen I do understand that churches are not comedy studios. Respect other people and they will respect you. And speaking about homosexuality, don't forget that homosexuals used to throw darts to popes portrait at their shameful "pride" parade in Stockholm, as documented in emaso.org
18:36 November 13, 2009 by Nemesis
The vatican playing games as usual.

I hope he cruxifies the vatican for this.
18:54 November 13, 2009 by Tutu
First of all if we are talking about christian churches the swedish state church is not one of them. it is not a bible church but religious charity organisation. This is an organisation controlled by non-christian politicians and racists. At least the Royals in England go to church and profess christian faith.

Gardell have deluded clue about who God is Who is Gardell to tell us about God. I wish i have an opportunity to meet with him at a round table and discuss God with him. I really wish someone could set us up in a public meeting. His type of chritianity is what i called-anti-christ(ian)
19:06 November 13, 2009 by Rebel
Good to see that someone can attack Catholics in this country and not get accused of violating any laws regarding hate. Guess Jews, Catholics, etc. are open game in this nation:

20:03 November 13, 2009 by karex

The Swedish church is a christian church like any other. The fact that there are very few people who actually go to church these days chages nothing. All religions /churches basically say the same thing: "I'm right and everyone else is wrong". How we have space for all these exclusive "rights" in the world is beyond my undeerstanding.

Having been born and raised a Catholic I can offer my two-cents worth: The Catholic Church died a long time ago and just forgot to lie down. They're living in the middle ages.
23:25 November 13, 2009 by Rolf100
Why would the Vatican care about Sweden? Sweden has an "official" church and that church has no ties to the Vatican. The Vatican has major problems - what a Swedish comic thinks of the Vatican is low on the Vatican's priority list.
00:44 November 14, 2009 by Shawn77
Gardell should read about Sodom and Gomorra.

Why would christianity accept someone who does not repent what is clearly considered a sin in christianity?

Would a murderor, who does not repent his sins, be accepted? A thief? No.
00:44 November 14, 2009 by thevasin
Vatican is right in my opinion.

03:44 November 14, 2009 by Globalnomad
Just imagine if our prancing friend Jonas had been critical of Islam and then tried to get his film team a permit to film at Mecca ? Enough anti Catholic hogwash !
11:04 November 14, 2009 by Osokin
Agree with the sensible folk here, the Vatican has it totally right again, it seems catholics have become the punching bag for all kinds of freaks, say anything about the jews or muslims and you get promptly syndicated as racist and silenced, but catholics are fair game eh?.

The same goes with minorities, gay and whatnot, the thought police falls hard on those who dare dissent. The white, straight men and the catholics are free to bash. But here a line's been drawn with this clown.
06:58 November 28, 2009 by MasonPaul
The Vatican is something you don't want to mess with per Tony Gambino of the Gambino crime family. Read the online details. The Vatican sits at the table with the mafia. It was responsible for the assasination of John F. Kennedy. Why? One reason JFK OKed abortion. JFK paid the mafia bosses suitcases with millions of dollars to get the mafia to persuade the union to vote for him but he didn't do a thing for the mafia after elected. The Popes biggest problem with Kennedy was over abortion at this time. Currently the Catholic church is spending millions of dollars against allowing abortion to be a part of the Heath Care Reform in the USA. The Vatican has significant control issues. It may try to muscle into your neck of the woods. Watch out.
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