Clergyman Einar Gelius suggests that the venerable GrÃ¸nland church in downtown Oslo could become a mosque
Church leaders in Norway are trying to get old churches turned into mosques. From Aftenposten, with thanks to Ali Dashti:
Progress Party leader Carl I. Hagen argued Wednesday that dilapidated Norwegian churches should not be eligible to be converted to mosques – a suggestion put forward by state church leaders. Prime Minister and Christian Democrat Kjell Magne Bondevik is not enthusiastic about the proposed conversion, but said the final decision was for church and not state.
KirkerÃ¥det – the National Council of the Church of Norway – said last month that the deconsecration of churches that had fallen into disuse and disrepair was an option to create buildings for other worthy goals.
The Council’s suggestion included turning the decaying buildings into cultural centers, concert halls or mosques – the latter suggestion being one the Progress Party isn’t going to take sitting down.
“The church means so much for Norwegian cultural heritage that they must at least not become a house of worship for another religion,” Hagen said during parliamentary question time on Wednesday.
PM Bondevik conceded that he felt it would be “unnatural” for Norwegian churches to become mosques, but felt this was finally a decision for the church.
“The Church has comprehensive autonomy in spiritual matters,” Bondevik said.