September 17, 2021

Female Priests Now Outnumber Male Ones In Sweden

For the first time in historical past, Swedish female priests outnumber their male counterparts sixty years after they were first allowed to don the clerical collar, the Church of Sweden stated on Wednesday.

Of the 3,060 priests at the moment serving in Sweden, 1,533 are female, or 50.1 percent, according to Cristina Grenholm, secretary for the Church of Sweden.

According to Grenholm

From a historic perspective, this parity happened faster than we earlier imagined. A report from 1990 estimated that women can be half of the entire clergy in 2090. And it took thirty years.

Unlike the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church of Sweden has allowed female priests since 1958 and first ordained three women in 1960.
In 1982 the Swedish parliament additionally scrapped a “conscience clause” that allowed members of the clergy to refuse to cooperate with a female colleague.

Women have been over-represented on theological programs, particularly for the reason that separation of church and state in 2000, and accounted for 70 percent of these training for ordination in a study in 2013. Grenholm stated:

Many parishes during the Sunday service try to have both a man and a woman at the altar. Since we believe that God created human beings, both men and women, in God’s image, it is essential that we do not only speak about it, but that it is also shown.

However, there is a wage gap between male and female pastors, averaging 2,200 Swedish kronor ($248 or 215 euros) per month according to the church’s newspaper Kyrkans Tidning.

Grenholm said this was due to more men being in higher positions of authority.

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In Sweden, ministers in the Church of Sweden have the title of priest, while those serving in parishes outside the former State Church are referred to as pastors.


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