STOCKHOLM — The Church of Sweden has more female than male priests to the very first time, according to figures released this season, an indication of enormous strides for sex equality because women were allowed to become ordained in 1960.
The Lutheran establishment, that was the official Swedish state church before 2000, today counts 1,533 girls serving as priests and 1,527 guys. Its archbishop and many bishops are also girls.
“It is as it ought to be.”
Oberg Hansen became a priest over 30 decades before, and she remembers the discrimination she confronted the initial parish she had been assigned to did not accept her.
The European Institute for Gender Equality a year ago rated Sweden in the very top of its yearly prestige catalog, giving the nation a score of 83.6 in comparison to an average of 67.4 to the European Union as a whole.
“it is a fantastic thing, however, I do not think a lot about it today,” Oberg Hansen said of the sex issue within her work.
Sweden’s route towards gender parity is shared over Scandinavia, with approximately equal numbers of women and men working in the clergy positions of the Church of Denmark and girls well-represented at the priesthood of the Church of Norway.
Church of Sweden Bishop Eva Brunne, who retired following a decade leading to Stockholm diocese, helped push the approval of women but worried she doesn’t believe the priesthood should develop into an overwhelmingly feminine profession.
And all I could say is I do not understand. I don’t understand,”’ Brunne stated in a phone interview. That means more feminine attorneys, female physicians, etcetera.”
Sweden’s church includes some 5.8 million members, representing a few 57.7percent of the nation’s inhabitants. But a lot of pews are empty nowadays, and therefore are more inclined to be inhabited by girls too.
“I do think it’s something we ought to take as a warning, constantly, once we see that there’s an imbalance,” the Rev. Cristina Grenholm, ” the mind of theology for the Church of Sweden, said, calling the sex imbalance among worshippers”striking”
“I do think that guys have something to find from the church,” Grenholm explained.
Anna Inghammer, 42, a mother of three researching theology and also a candidate to the priesthood, said that the balance of women and men at the church made sense to her, however, she believes more work is necessary to deliver equality in different regions.
“Jesus, in his time, was standing up for justice for individuals of all courses and all sexes, so I believe that it’s time for women to more have a step ahead,” Inghammer explained.
. .and that is also something that we will need to work with this,” she explained. “The church is for everybody.”