Eva Brunne, the Church of Sweden’s first lesbian bishop, suggested that a church remove all crosses and put up signs pointing toward Mecca in the off chance Muslims come to the church to pray.
“The bishop insisted this wasn’t an issue…airports and hospitals already had multi-faith prayer rooms, and converting the dockyard church would only bring it up to speed…the Bishop later took to her official blog to explain that removing Christian symbols from the church and preparing the building for Muslim prayer doesn’t make a priest any less a defender of the faith…”
The Church of Sweden already accepts a lesbian bishop. Why not go all the way?
In honor of Bishop Brunne’s inclusive idea, I have a few other suggestions for the Church of Sweden, and all Christian denominations:
- The term “Christian” is about as non-inclusive as you can get. It directly references Christ, by whom people of other faiths may be deeply offended. It’s unfettered religious superiority. From here on out, we should refer to ourselves not as “Christians,” but as “believers.” The term “believer” shows that we’re spiritual, but doesn’t have the harsh aftertaste of specificity. Anyone can be a believer!
- While we’re at it, let’s just toss the entire bible. If a Muslim, Hindu, or someone of another faith walks into a church and sees a bible, they may become upset because their faith is different. Moreover, what if an atheist walks into a church and sees a bible? The bible has so many rules that make people sad, so let’s grab the stuff we like (God is love, thou shalt not judge, and maybe a few other things), put it in a pamphlet, and chuck the old book.
- Let’s scrap the term “church” as well. Many people have negative feelings toward the word “church” because it feels judgey. Oh, I’m in a church, I guess I have to believe in God now! Right? Instead of calling it “church,” let’s just call it a “community center,” or a “hang out.” This way, if a group of satanists shows up, they aren’t offended.
- Lastly, do we have to talk about God so much? I know he’s the whole purpose of “church,” but like, maybe we should stop referencing him (or her) so frequently. It may be off-putting for non-believers to walk into a place and hear the word “God” so many times.
I believe my suggestions will help the church—whoops—the community center to be even more inclusive, because God knows—shoot—because as a Christian—hang on—as the bible says—darn it. Reset! I think these suggestions will help because goodness knows, as believers, we should follow the words of the pamphlet, which says thou shalt not judge.