Norway has a strong monoreligious heritage that is currently undergoing changes, primarily due to immigration. This study is based on focus group interviews with 45 youths from six different congregations in the Church of Norway, in Oslo and rural areas near Oslo. None of the youths expressed generally negative sentiments against the presence of persons with a religious affiliation other than Christianity. There were much stronger prejudices against persons from the opposite side of the city as compared to prejudices against those with a faith other than Christianity. Those with a less clearly expressed faith are, however, somewhat more reluctant in the presence of persons with another religious affiliation as compared to youths with a more explicit Christian belief. This confirms overall findings that young persons tend to be more accepting than older, and that faith and active involvement in church is positively correlated with acceptance as compared to merely religious belonging.
Religious coping in Denmark has primarily been studied among the Danish majority with whom religious practice is limited. The aim of this study is to explore a small sample of Danish Pentecostals’ experiences of religious coping. The study includes semi-structured interviews with eighteen Danish Pentecostals facing a psychological crisis. Qualitative methods are applied for generating and analyzing the data material. The theme of religious individualism ran through the participants’ talk of religious coping in relation to fellow believers, reading the Bible, and personal experiences of God. Religious individualism was characterized by: A lived expectation of having one’s specific individual needs met through one’s religiosity. The findings from this study show that having specific individual needs met was central for the religious faith of the participants. They used both individualistic and institutional religious understandings when constructing their religious lives.
This study concerns the Danish public service broadcaster DR’s television satire and comedy show Det slører stadig [Still Veiled] (2013) and its influence on public discussions and controversies concerning religion. Whereas news media’s coverage of Islam is often criticized for having a negative bias and thereby serving to escalate conflict, the cultural programming of public service broadcasters may provide different representations and enable more diverse discussions. In this study we consider how and to what extent Still Veiled gave rise to discussion and controversy concerning religion in both the general public sphere and in smaller cultural publics constituted through various social network media. The analysis shows that several, very different framings of religion appear in these debates. These debates furthermore involve a significant proportion of minority voices. The analysis suggests that a cultural public sphere may work as a corrective to the political public sphere dominated by news media.
This article analyses the effects of legislative changes that boosted church funding in the late 20th century on the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Iceland (ELCI). The four main research questions are: What were the effects of these changes in the parishes? What changed in the working environment of the clergy? How did the ELCI react to the changes with rules of procedure? What challenges did this bring about in the relations between clergy and parish council? The study is based on analyses of reports from Parliament and church institutions, as well as reports from parishes and qualitative interviews with four ministers. The conclusion is that the new legislation was pivotal in creating “city churches” in the capital area and in larger towns. The role of the clergy changed in the city with the improved economy. This new role included more managerial tasks, but lines of authority were unclear.