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Svenska kyrkans diakonistyrelse: Tillflöden och tillkomst, organisation och verksamhet intill 1938
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology.
2016 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
Svenska kyrkans diakonistyrelse : The Church of Sweden National Board for Parish Life. Incentives and Origin, Organisation and Work until 1938 (English)
Abstract [en]

This study is focused on the way in which the Church of Sweden emerged as an overall national unit in support of the pastoral activities in the dioceses and parishes through the work of the Church of Sweden National Board for Parish Life (Svenska kyrkans diakonistyrelse). This Board was established in 1910 as one of three Central Boards of the Church of Sweden. The incentives and origin of this Board as well as its organisation and activities are investigated for the period from its inception up until 1938.

The Board was shaped by the Swedish Practical and Pastoral Theologian Olof Holmström (1854–1921) on the basis of his National Church Programme (folkkyrkoprogram). The establishment of the General Swedish Corporation of Priests (Allmänna svenska prästföreningen) in 1903 was the first limited outflow of Holmström’s programme. The interpretation of the Youth Church Movement (ungkyrkorörelsen) as the primary revitalising factor in the Church of Sweden during the first two decades of the 20th century has been rejected as one of the organisational myths identified in this thesis. The establishment of the National Board for Parish Life was the result of an informal collaboration between representatives for the Parish Movement (församlingsrörelsen) and formal initiatives, primarily taken by Archbishop J A Ekman (1845–1913) and the Minister of Ecclesiastical Affairs, Hugo Hammarskjöld (1845–1937).

The work of the Board was extensive with many branches carried out alongside the parish work line (församlingsvårdslinjen) and the social ethics line (socialetiska linjen). The work was adapted over time, due to changing theological as well as general organisational patterns in the Swedish state and society, such as changing ideas of Sweden as a ’National Home’ (folkhem).

Different operational levels of the organisation are investigated, such as the Governing Body, a number of Committees for the ongoing work in limited areas and the corporation of diocesan representatives (stiftsombud). The high-ranking First Secretaries’ influence on the daily work was important.

The Church of Sweden National Board for Parish Life is one of the roots of the current Church of Sweden administrative headquarters at Uppsala. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2016. , 327 p.
Studia historico-ecclesiastica Upsaliensia, ISSN 0562-2751 ; 49
Keyword [en]
Parish work, social ethics, Church of Sweden, Church of Sweden National Board for Parish Life, General Swedish Corporation of Priests, Parish Movement, National Church, organisational myth, practical theology, pastoral theology, Olof Holmström
Keyword [sv]
Svenska kyrkans diakonistyrelse, Allmänna svenska prästföreningen, församlingsrörelsen, folkkyrka
National Category
Humanities Religious Studies
Research subject
Church History
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-303665ISBN: 978-91-554-9713-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-303665DiVA: diva2:972638
Public defence
2016-12-16, Ihresalen, Uppsala, 13:00 (Swedish)
Available from: 2016-11-18 Created: 2016-09-21 Last updated: 2017-01-24Bibliographically approved

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