News |

Räsänen’s comments cause spike in church resignations

Controversial statements from Interior Minister Päivi Räsänen led to a larger-than-usual number of Finns leaving the Finnish Lutheran church via an online service on Wednesday.

Graphic
Image: Yle Newsgraphics

On a normal day fewer than a hundred people resign from the church using the eroakirkosta.fi website.

On Wednesday the figure was 960, after Christian Democrat leader and Interior Minister Päivi Räsänen made a controversial speech including comments comparing abortion to 'butchery' and suggesting people should place the bible above the law in any situations where they might conflict.

Members of Finland’s established religions pay a church tax of around one percent of their income. The figure depends on their home parish. Since 2003 people have been able to leave the church online, and the number of resignations has risen dramatically. Before that those doubting their faith had to speak to a priest before they were permitted to leave the church.

Latest in: News

Headlines

News

Taxman threatens to search Yle premises in pursuit of Panama Papers

Finland’s tax authorities have threatened to secure search warrants to raid Yle’s premises and journalists’ homes in pursuit of the so-called Panama Papers, a trove of documents outlining years of work by a Panamanian law firm to set up shell firms in tax havens for wealthy clients. Of more than 80 countries where media have reported on the data, Finland claims to be the only one where the authorities have reacted in this way.

Our picks

Latest

Muualla Yle.fi:ssä