Church

Bishop(ess) Proposes Church Remove all Christian Symbols… to Create Space for Muslims

In Sweden.

Calling Muslim guests to the church “angels“, the Bishop later took to her official blog to explain that removing Christian symbols from the church and preparing the building for Muslim prayer doesn’t make a priest any less a defender of the faith. Rather, to do any less would make one “stingy towards people of other faiths”.

The bishop insisted this wasn’t an issue, after all airports and hospitals already had multi-faith prayer rooms, and converting the dockyard church would only bring it up to speed. Regardless, the announcement has aroused protest.

Father Patrik Pettersson, one of the priests in her diocese and active in the same parish as the Seaman’s mission church has hit back in a blog of his own, complaining there is no way you could equate a consecrated church with a prayer room, remarking “I should have thought a bishop would be able to tell the difference”.

How novel. Oh, by the way, the Bishopess is also the world’s first openly lesbian bishop. I wouldn’t bet on Muslim being as reciprocating…

Church

Sweden Recognises New ‘File-sharing Religion’

How bizarre. It’s called: The Church of Kopimism.

A “church” whose central tenet is the right to file-share has been formally recognised by the Swedish government.

The Church of Kopimism claims that “kopyacting” – sharing information through copying – is akin to a religious service.

The “spiritual leader” of the church said recognition was a “large step”.

But others were less enthusiastic and said the church would do little to halt the global crackdown on piracy.

Holy information

The Swedish government agency Kammarkollegiet finally registered the Church of Kopimism as a religious organisation shortly before Christmas, the group said.

“We had to apply three times,” said Gustav Nipe, chairman of the organisation.

The church, which holds CTRL+C and CTRL+V (shortcuts for copy and paste) as sacred symbols, does not directly promote illegal file sharing, focusing instead on the open distribution of knowledge to all.

It was founded by 19-year-old philosophy student and leader Isak Gerson. He hopes that file-sharing will now be given religious protection.

“For the Church of Kopimism, information is holy and copying is a sacrament. Information holds a value, in itself and in what it contains and the value multiplies through copying. Therefore copying is central for the organisation and its members,” he said in a statement.

“Being recognised by the state of Sweden is a large step for all of Kopimi. Hopefully this is one step towards the day when we can live out our faith without fear of persecution,” he added.

The church’s website has been unavailable since it broke the news of its religious status. A message urged those interested in joining to “come back in a couple of days when the storm has settled”…

The BBC has more.

 

Culture

Man Arrested for Trying to Split Atoms – In his Kitchen

The Sydney Morning Herald reports this morning:

A Swedish man who was arrested after trying to split atoms in his kitchen  said he was only doing it as a hobby.

Richard Handl said he had the radioactive elements radium, americium and  uranium in his apartment in southern Sweden when police showed up and arrested  him on charges of unauthorised possession of nuclear material.

The 31-year-old Handl said he had tried for months to set up a nuclear  reactor at home and kept a blog about his experiments, describing how he created  a small meltdown on his stove.

Only later did he realise it might not be legal and sent a question to  Sweden’s Radiation Authority, which answered by sending the police.

“I have always been interested in physics and chemistry,” Handl said, adding  he just wanted to “see if it’s possible to split atoms at home”.

The police raid took place in late July, but police have refused to comment.  If convicted, Handl could face fines or up to two years in prison.

Although he says police didn’t detect dangerous levels of radiation in his  apartment, he now acknowledges the project wasn’t such a good idea.

“From now on, I will stick to the theory,” he said.

Crazy…

Church

Swedish Church Members ‘Don’t Believe in Jesus’

Only 15 percent of members of the Church of Sweden say they believe in Jesus, and an equal number claim to be atheists according to the results of a recent survey.

I don’t even know what to say… I mean, what’s the point? Church without Jesus?!

More than 10,000 members of the Swedish Church participated in a comprehensive membership survey carried out over the past year and dubbed “Member 2010” (Medlem 2010).

According to the survey, 15 percent of church members they are atheists, while a quarter of Swedish Church members identify themselves as agnostic.

The younger the members, the more likely they are to be atheists or agnostics.

Bromander pointed out that there is no requirement that church members believe in Jesus or any particular religious figure.

“Many are members, not for religious reasons, but because of the role the church plays in society, or because it serves as an organisation which maintains Swedish traditions,” said Bromander.

“In fact, there are many members who would rather that we focus more on our social work in Sweden than on Sunday services.”

Of the roughly 6.6 million members of the Church of Sweden, about 400,000 are active churchgoers, attending services at least once a month.

According to the survey, 90 percent of church members have a weak relationship with the Swedish Church, forcing the church to ponder whether or not it remains a relevant institution in Swedish society…

There’s more here.

They’re calling it ‘a byproduct of the secularisation’. That and the Church acquiescing, simply giving up on standing for and preaching the truth if you ask me. Biblical truth that is…