• Sweden's news in English

Swedish church makes money from porn

Rebecca Martin · 16 May 2011, 17:11

Published: 16 May 2011 17:11 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

“It is almost impossible to find any companies that are completely ‘clean’,” the chief economist Stefan Skoog at the Lund diocese told The Local.

Despite very clear guidelines from the Church of Sweden when it comes to pornography, the diocese of Lund has chosen to place money in companies that distribute pornographic material, for example by investing in commercial media house MTG, which broadcasts porn at night on film channel TV 1000.

Skoog is aware of the connection to TV 1000 but points out that they are working hard to influence their fund managers to only invest in ethical funds.

“Our strategy is to actively influence our fund managers not to invest in funds that make money this way and also get them to bring this up with the companies to try to influence these to stop,” said Skoog.

But if the Church of Sweden would rule out all companies with connections to ‘unethical’ industries there would be very few left to invest in and still be making money, according to Skoog.

“It is also really hard to know where one should draw the line. All ethical funds have this problem, because it is always possible to ague that something could be used in an unethical way,” Skoog said.

When Sveriges Radio (SR) asked the general public in the local area what they thought of the Church having connections to these industries the response was negative.

“This is questionable. I would rather that the Church of Sweden place their money in funds that didn’t deal in such things,” one passer-by told SR.

Story continues below…

“It is completely improper. I think the church should follow its own Christian values and be a paragon of morality in society,“ another remarked.

But Stefan Skoog would like the members of the Church of Sweden to rest assured that the Church places its money as ethically as possible.

“And if a fund proves to be less ethical than we would prefer, we work actively in trying to influence them to change,” Skoog told The Local.

Rebecca Martin (rebecca.martin@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

18:10 May 16, 2011 by cookiemaster
Problem is that TV doesn't offer anything useful at all(every-day's lies in rigsdag as well as on discovery channel) and that includes porn which is loaded with disease known under multiculturalism. That translates into governmental influence on media choice and so even if subcontracted from church.
18:37 May 16, 2011 by space2
I still don't understand why porn is worse then any crime/war movie where blood, bodyparts and other disgusting stuff is shown. For example, what is worse for a kid to watch: A naked women or a man being short or burried in the desert by some gangsters...
18:38 May 16, 2011 by William Sachsen-Coburg-Gotha
Perhaps they should distribute that money to the poor and needy instead, just like some bloke said a couple of thousand years ago, eller hur?
18:45 May 16, 2011 by philster61
"Holy Buttcakes batman......."
19:16 May 16, 2011 by Tanskalainen
I'm surprised the C of S doesn't make its own porn. A useless church if there ever was one.
19:25 May 16, 2011 by StuartM
It's certainly true that sex is no worse than violence in films and TV space2 but porn isn't just sex, it's (in most cases) the exploitation and abuse of women and the glorification of male violence and male power. Violence and abuse in mainstream films are neither glorified nor eroticised to the same degree and the actors are not subjected to it for real as they are in porn. I think it's disgraceful that the church would invest in porn but then christians have never cared much for women's rights historically so maybe we shouldn't be so surprised.
20:12 May 16, 2011 by occassional
A breath of fresh air. They should team up with the Catholic and then they will become an unbeatable monopoly. Sodom and Gomorrah Distributions AB.
22:21 May 16, 2011 by Stickeroo
Some churches do make porn, albeit the illegal child variety. But in all seriousness, I would agree that it's difficult to invest in companies that are totally moral and fit the bill. Not to say there aren't any, but the whole point of "investing" is to turn a profit.
23:48 May 16, 2011 by jamesblish
At least the catholic church make their own porn.
01:22 May 17, 2011 by laura ka baal
is this church owned by immigrants, the answer is no.
07:13 May 17, 2011 by space2
@StuartM: you are right: that kind of porn is bad.

But I'm not sure what kind of porn do they refer to (I don't watch TV1000 ;-)

Some people consider even erotic movies porn, but I agree that hardcore porn is bad (at least for the children).
12:09 May 17, 2011 by Angry Ami
Now that's liberal ;-)
10:54 June 18, 2011 by jacquelinee
Maybe I am mistaken, but it seems to me that churches are suppose to invest the money from collections etc in the poor, the needy, the homeless, the sick etc.etc. and not on financial institutions and so forth. I think the next time the collection plate is passed, I'll just skip the middle man and invest it myself.
13:25 June 18, 2011 by mahanks
No wonder some crazy swedes weeks ago decided to take their porn to the church straight to the podium during one of the sunday services. The church is reaping from its seeds.May the lord revive this country
Today's headlines
Sweden: Russian warships in the Baltic 'worrying'
Swedish Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist. Photo: Vilhelm Stokstad/TT

Two Russian warships equipped with long-range missiles have entered the Baltic Sea after passing Denmark.

Why businesses are worried about Sweden's drone ban
A drone filming in Stockholm. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

The Local investigates what Sweden's new drone ban could mean for businesses in the country.

This is the new top boss of Swedish Ericsson
Börje Ekholm. Photo: Magnus Hjalmarson Neideman/SvD/TT

Telecoms giant Ericsson has appointed a new CEO after a turbulent year for the company.

These are Sweden's best universities: ranking
A new university ranking has been released. Photo: Cecilia Larsson Lantz/Imagebank.sweden.se

At least according to this global ranking, which picks 12 Swedish universities among the top-1000.

Swedish pharmacies restrict paracetamol sales for teens
The move is intended to cut paracetamol overdoses. Photo: Nora Lorek/TT

Sweden's pharmacies are banning teens under 18 from buying more than one pack of pills at a time.

The Local List
12 Swedish words with just awesome literal translations
A filthy-minded lobster, i.e. a snuskhummer. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB scanpix/TT

One of our favourite things about the Swedish language is its wonderful compound words, which range from being utterly bizarre to making perfect sense.

Rwandan genocide suspect held in Sweden
A memorial centre in Kigali, Rwanda. Photo: Ben Curtis/AP

A man has been arrested in Sweden suspected of involvement in the 1994 Rwandan genocide which claimed 800,000 lives.

Sweden can extend border controls, EU says
A police officer carrying out a check at Sweden's border with Denmark. Photo: Emil Langvad/TT

EU countries including Sweden should be granted permission to extend temporary border controls by a period of a further three months, the European Commission has decided.

Nobel Prizes
'I'd say he's arrogant but I'd be lying': Swedes on Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan performing in France. Photo: David Vincent/AP

Almost two weeks have passed since Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature and he has yet to acknowledge the win. The Local asked Swedes what they think of the singer's silence.

Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast by thousands
A Swedish migration authority office in Stockholm. Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

The country has also slashed its prediction for 2017.

Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available