Finland: Chaplain boycots bishop

In December last year, bishop Björn Vikström of Porvoo visited the parish in Lappfjärd-Kristinestad in southernmost Osthrobotnia on the west coast of Finland. He had discussions with the clergy and other parish workers, with the different elected officials and with the parishioners, and took part in some church services. All very normal for that sort of thing.
What was less normal this time around, was that Markus Saarinen, the chaplain of Sideby (that nowadays is a part of Lappfjärd-Kristinestad), refused to attend the services in which the bishop participated. He did take part in the discussions, however. The reason for his refusal was that he considers bishop Vikström to be a heretic, since he is a Liberal and a good man with pretty much the same views as I on many matters. I wrote about a call for a boycot him and other ELCF bishops a while ago.
Since the vicar had ordered Saarinen to attend the services and he refused anyway, Saarinen was handed a reprimand. To my mind, this is quite logical - if an employee refuses to do his job, the employer or manager has every right to reprimand him. At least.

But, of course, the conservatives see this as outrageous. It is persecution of all who want to be Classical Christians, they say. And if being a Classical Christian equals being an ass, they are right, of course.
But I don't think it does. There are Classical Christian asses, as this case clearly shows - but the majority are good, considerate people that it is very nice to meet. It's the same as with Liberals or any other group of people. Some are nice and some aren't, pretty much regardless of their opinions.

Sidebykaplan bojkottade biskopen (Kyrkpressen 15.12.10)
Saarinen fick anmärkning (Kyrkpressen 18.1.11)

No comments: