The bishop apologizes for the confirmation speech of the parish priest

Olav Øygard is the bishop of Nord-Hålogaland diocese.Olav Øygard is the bishop of Nord-Hålogaland diocese.Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB scanpix

During a confirmation speech in Kautokeino, the parish priest issued severe warnings against homosexuality, same-sex marriage, abortion and divorce. Now the bishop apologizes.

The reactions to the speech of the parish priest Bjarne Gustad to the young people have been harsh, and now the bishop of Nord-Hålogaland regrets the statements. At the same time, the pastor is summoned for a hearing.

“I distance myself from the message the priest made in the service, it is not in line with what the church stands for. I would like to apologize to those confirmed and their families and guests,” said Bishop Olav Øygard of Nord-Hålogaland in a press release.

The bishop is supported by the president of the Church of Norway, Olav Fykse Tveit.

“The Bishop of Nord-Hålogaland is handling this matter in accordance with church procedures,” he said.

The pastor practically gave a thunderous speech to the youth, warning, among other things, that same-sex marriage is against God’s creation, that Norway has an “evil law” that makes abortion legal, and where he warned against women’s rights and that women have a particular responsibility for infidelity.

The priest has told VG that he will continue to address these issues in future speeches.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today


2 Comments on "The bishop apologizes for the confirmation speech of the parish priest"

  1. old wise and educated | 7. September 2020 at 18:30 | Reply

    its a farce..over 60% of church members do not believe in God (published Norwegian statistics ) —-14 year olds’ who do not believe in god are confirmed-. that is merely a social custom and a money scoring event.
    What hypocrisy —–to pass judgement on anyone else-

  2. Grandstandingly using a royal family member’s confirmation to publicly condemn anything was unChristian and terribly destructive. It wrongfully embarrassed the royal family. It was unprofessional, and Gustad should find another line of work.

    If, for example, the very young crown princess were to think she’s “lesbian” it’s no big deal, for girls anyway. Promiscuity *is* dangerous and destructive, but her mother and grandmother are strong role models for the fundamental importance of a girl/woman having and loving children and family.

    As to old but unwise’s comment, why are so many Europeans rabid anti-whatever ideologues? I cherish the personal and community values I received from growing up in Rock Island Illinois’ South Park Presbyterian Church.

    Whether or not anyone is “a” Christian, it is – as Kierkegaard existentially stressed – vital to *be* “Christian” … to be kind, courteous, and considerate whenever possible … and loving towards friends and family … in our everyday lives.

    A church is a congregation of *people* who are like extended family and can help people through all sorts of crises – some just normal parts of normal maturing. (In America with those who go on to college and careers ending up so far from home, those communities are vital, as I and my first, young wife and children experienced back at Chapel by the Lake in Juneau/Auke Bay, Alaska – my daughter was all her grandparents’ first grandchild, 3,000 miles away from them!)

    And as far as Heaven or Hell, I’ll find out if they’re true if/when I get there. 🙂

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