• Sweden's news in English

Swedish Christmas market resurrects Jesus

The Local · 18 Oct 2012, 16:21

Published: 18 Oct 2012 16:21 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Organizers of the Christmas market at Fredriksdal Gardens and Museums in Skåne County always planned for their markets to have a nativity scene including Jesus, Mary and the three wise men.

However, the organizers soon changed their mind and emailed the two churches who were to provide the nativity scene, stating that the plan was cancelled as the market was to be a “politically and religiously independent operation”.

But this move prompted a storm of criticism from the Swedish public, forcing the head of the event, Joakim Thomasson, to back down.

“I was a little too hasty and hadn’t done my homework,” he told the TT news agency.

“He thought that it was a question of some kind of church ritual,” said Andrea Danielsson, head of the cultural board of the local authority (Kulturnämnden), to TT.

Church official Eva Åsare, who initially blasted the ban as a “blatant fear of religion”, also welcomed the quick reversal.

“It gladdens me. It was good that we made the effort on this. And full credit to people who can change,” she said.

Story continues below…

TT/The Local/og

Follow The Local on Twitter

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

16:47 October 18, 2012 by millionmileman
What a wonderful concept. I wish people in America would fight back against the Atheist Grinches that we have to deal with every Christmas over here.

18:20 October 18, 2012 by Grokh
@millionmileman dont speak about things you dont understand.

in sweden even though most people are atheists they couldnt care less about stuff like this.

They will even brag that church here is not as bad as everywhere else.

This has nothing to do with atheism and people who push for secularism.

It has more to do about swedish insecurities and fear for not getting muslims to show up.

Personally as an atheist i grew up with people having the nativity scene, as well as santa claus with the coca cola, both didnt mean anything . Christmas meant a nice holiday to spend time with family and friends. which is more noble than to worship zombie jesus.

Just like christianity took the date from previous religions to celebrate something, future generations will use the date to celebrate something else just be glad its no fanatic worship or goat killing or blood drinking stuff.

And remember in sweden christmas is "jul" which as a word has nothing to do with christ or nativity.

You americans can shove your paranoia over "war on christmas" where the sun doesnt shine because most people use christmas for something better than believing in fairy tales.

and get some more information. Most secular anti symbol ,that pushes religious stuff away, comes from other religions people and the fear of insulting them.

Atheists couldn't give a rats ass , and would rather focus on exposing the brainwashing of children by religious fanatics throughout the world. As well as stopping religion based politics.

having a stupid nativity scene at a christmas doesnt mean anything and doesnt affect society in an oppressive way.
20:21 October 18, 2012 by dizzymoe33
I personally don't care if people celebrate as religious or non-religious when it comes to holidays. But what I do care about is a group of people telling me what I can or can not celebrate when our Country was founded on certain principles. I can't even stand up and say a pledge to my own Countries flag because of group of people crying it is not right!! I am so over this politically correct bulls*it!!! There are more important things to concern ourselves with.
23:14 October 18, 2012 by Sven-Ingvar
Seems that the politically correct wish to continue having Swedes lobotomized as to Sweden's only Legally defined God being our Christian God, whose compound redemptive name is Lord Jesus Christ.

This makes the only legal definition for religion in Sweden a denomination of Christianity. Sweden's king Eric the Holy saw a golden cross in the blue sky, a sign from our Christian God.

Thus creating the worlds very first national flag.

A Gold cross of Jesus on a blue sky.The Swedish Flag.

Are the politically correct going to replace our flag with a crescent moon to further burn Christ from one,s mind?
08:17 October 19, 2012 by SecondGen

Eventually, the nordic flags may well be replaced.

But it's not really important, right?
18:29 October 19, 2012 by cogito
Few religions are more fundamentalist than atheism. The only difference is that atheists substitute a political party for a church, and worship presidents or politicians as their messiah.

Their demons are whoever disagrees with their dogma.
14:05 October 21, 2012 by bcterry
" Few religions are more fundamentalist than atheism. The only difference is that atheists substitute a political party for a church, and worship presidents or politicians as their messiah.

Their demons are whoever disagrees with their dogma".

Wow, i never knew that.

That's very profound, did you come up with that all by yourself?
16:31 October 21, 2012 by JoeSwede
I'm glad that commen sense persevered.

Showing the nativity scene should not offend anyone.

In our modern society we should encourage people to explore
20:33 October 21, 2012 by HarryM-B
As a Muslim I feel it is offensive that you shove the image of Jesus in our faces in this way. Why don't you have a model of a baby Mohammed instead?
16:11 October 22, 2012 by k2kats
I'm delighted that common sense prevailed!

Reasonable, peaceful people respect each others' beliefs and introduce us to their own... rather than try to shove us out of the way. Celebrating differences enriches us all.
04:44 October 27, 2012 by wendyb
It seems as if the same type of thing is happening all over. in Chilliwack, B.C. a parent went to the school board demanding that they scrap a decades old tradition of the Gideon's giving Bibles to the students.

The children must take home a permission slip for the parents to sign before they can receive the Bible.

Parents raised a cry and hue when they heard about the complaint, writing numerous letters to the local paper, and sending calls to the school board and the school board dismissed his complaint.

So sad that Christians are having to fight now for traditions that have been held sacred forever.
23:21 October 28, 2012 by esvahnt
its a pitty that christians are so easy going when its about their faith or tradition

so different from other religions like muslim or jewish who are fanatically proud of their gods and ceremonies

christians should learn from that fanatic believing and defend their own religion as well

but it seems this way they will be soon barred from scene

only the strong ones survive
Today's headlines
Injured Swedish photographer protected by 'guardian angel'
Swedish photographer Paul Hansen on another occasion. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Photographer Paul Hansen thanked his lucky stars for surviving sniper fire while covering the battle for the Isis-held city of Mosul in Iraq.

How Sweden is trying to smooth relations with Saudis
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven meeting Saudi Arabia's Trade Minister Majid bin Abdullah Al Qasabi. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has visited Saudi Arabia a year and a half after relations turned frosty in a major diplomatic row.

My Swedish Career
'Swedish people love it, but they find it quite odd'
Scottish entrepreneur William Macdonald. Photo: Michael Campanella

Meet the web developer and entrepreneur using traditional Scottish ceilidh dancing to break the ice with Swedes.

Swedish photographer shot near Mosul
Hansen was being operated on in the Iraqi city of Erbil on Sunday. Photo: Nora Lorek/ TT

Paul Hansen, a photographer working for Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter, has sustained light injuries after being hit by what appears to be a sniper while covering the battle for the Isis-held city of Mosul in Iraq.

Trollhättan remembers school attack victims
'It was an attack on all of Sweden,' Education Minister Gustav Fridolin said. Photo: Thomas Johansson/ TT

Hundreds of people on Saturday turned out for a torchlight procession in the small town of Trollhättan in southwestern Sweden to honour the victims of last year’s deadly school attack there.

Sweden wants emission- free cars in EU by 2030
Photo: Jessica Gow/ TT

Sweden's environment minister on Saturday urged the European Union to ban petrol and diesel-powered vehicles from 2030.

Hundreds protest Swedish asylum laws
Around 1,000 people protested in Stockholm. Photo: Fredrik Persson/ TT

Hundreds of people on Saturday demonstrated in Stockholm and in many other parts of the country to protest Sweden’s tough new laws on asylum-seekers.

Swedish terror suspect ‘planned airport attack’
Swedish terror suspect Osama Krayem. Photo: Facebook

Swedish national Osama Krayem, linked to the deadly attacks in Paris on November 13 and in Brussels on March 22, is now suspected of having plotted to attack also the Schiphol airport in the Netherlands.

Dylan removes Nobel-mention from website
The American musician has more or less responded to the news with silence. Photo: Per Wahlberg

American singer-song writer Bob Dylan has removed any mention of him being named one of this year’s Nobel Prize laureates on his official website.

Refugee crisis
Asylum requests in Sweden down by 70 percent
Sweden's migration minister Morgan Johansson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Sweden received 70 percent fewer requests for asylum in the period between January and September 2016 than it did during the same time last year, the country’s justice and migration minister Morgan Johansson has revealed.

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Here's where it could snow in central Sweden this weekend
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
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
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
People-watching: October 7th-9th
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
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
jobs available