Fides | marras 10, 2023 | 0
Featured in Fides 3/23
Pope Francis to Make Apostolic Journey to Hungary in April
Pope Francis will make an Apostolic Journey to the European nation of Hungary from 28 to 30 April, marking his 41st Journey abroad, where he will follow a busy itinerary in the country’s capital of Budapest.
Apostolic Nuncio Finally Appointed for Finland
Diocesan Feast to be Held in Turku Again This Year
The location for the Diocesan Feast this summer has been confirmed. The Mass will take place in the Evangelical Lutheran Cathedral of Turku on Saturday, August 19th at 11.00. More information to follow in the spring and summer. Welcome!
10 Years of the Pontificate of Pope Francis
Pope’s Prayer Intentions for 2023
For victims of abuse
We pray for those who have suffered harm from members of the Church; may they find within the Church herself a concrete response to their pain and suffering.
Message of His Holiness Pope Francis for Lent
Lenten Penance and the Synodal Journey
With Families, Against Loneliness
As part of their meeting in Omberg, Sweden in early March, the Catholic Bishops of the Nordic Countries received a visit from the President of the Federation of Catholic Family Associations in Europe, Italian lawyer Vincenzo Bassi, as well as the Secretary General of the organization, Nicola Speranza.
The representatives of the organization describe FAFCE specifically as a federation, an umbrella, which other Catholic Family organization from different European countries can join through the recommendation of the Bishop’s Conference. The goal of FAFCE is to strengthen the position of the family in European decision making. Due to this, it hopes to gain representation also in the area of the Nordic Bishops’ Conference. So far, the lack of the Nordic dimension has restricted the organization’s possibility to influence: The wider an area it represents, the more it will be listened to both in the European Union and the Council of Europe, as well as in the political decision making of single European countries.
The premise is clear: “We represent the voice of the family in Europe, from a Catholic point of view. We respect the beauty and richness of the family, as well as the dignity of each family member. ” The goal is equally clear: “Stronger families build a successful future!” In the words of President Bassi: “The real problem is not a lack of family politics, but individualism. To have victory over it, more networks are needed, so we can solve the problem of loneliness – we need families to beat loneliness!”
For more information about FAFCE, see: https://www.fafce.org/.
To read the full interview by Fides and the Swedish Katolskt magasin Finnish, see page 8 here: https://katolinen.fi/ktlnnf-wp-content/uploads/2023/03/f2023-03.pdf
Continued Growth of Church Membership in 2022
At the end of 2022, there we 16734 registered Catholics in Finland. Thus the steady annual growth of the Diocese has continued at about 2,3%. Clear growth took place in all parishes, except at St. Joseph’s parish in Kuopio, where the amount of members remained about the same.
The Capital Region Approaching 10000 Catholics
The combined growth of the Helsinki parishes (St. Henry’s Cathedral and St. Mary’s parish) was a bit over 2%. Assuming this development continues positively, the amount of members of these two parishes combined may reach 10000 already this year. The largest amount of members gained was at St. Mary’s, with 111 new members, which equaled 2,4%. The largest growth measured in percentages (4,7%) took place in St. Olav’s parish (Jyväskylä). Rather large growth took place also in Turku (3,1%) and Oulu (3,5%).
With its 5095 members, St. Henry’s Cathedral parish is still the largest Catholic parish in Finland.
There were no great changes in the percentages of nationalities and languages spoken by the members. It must also be taken into consideration that there was lack of information pertaining to this in two parishes. In the 6 remaining parishes, 44,4% spoke Finnish or Swedish as their mother tongue, and 43,2% had Finnish citizenship. The largest amounts of members lived in the following areas: Helsinki 4558, Espoo 2088, Vantaa 1585, Turku-Kaarina 1350, Tampere 687, Jyväskylä with surroundings 405, Oulu 387, Kerava-Järvenpää-Tuusula 286, Kuopio 231.
Reasons for Growth and Decrease
The amount of members in parishes has increased through Baptisms (203) and new members received into the Church (30), for other reasons and due to immigration (183). The amount of members was decreased by deaths (61), moving abroad (35) and leaving the Church (36), making the combined end result an additional 374 members. It is noteworthy that the amount of members leaving the Church decreased substantially to less than half of the amounts of the previous years.
In 2022 Sacraments and teaching for First Communion were received by 166 parishioners. Confirmation was given to 181 parishioners. Within the area of the Diocese, there were 50 weddings, out of which 18 were marriages between two Catholics.
There is at the moment no encompassing information about how many children and youth participate in the teaching of their own religion in schools, which is legally binding for the municipalities, or how much they receive similar teaching, e.g. through the so-called “Saturday Courses.” The situation is challenging, because this information would be useful to both those organizing the teaching, as well as for the work of the Diocese and the parishes.
Church Membership Database Needs Developing
As before, there are certain technical difficulties in producing reports from the membership database, at least when it comes to registering the relocations of members between parishes. The amount of those moving from one parish to another are not equal between those leaving a parishes and those moving to parishes. This is likely due to the differences with when moves were registered in the database. We hope that the readability of the reports from the database will increase in the future. The total amounts are, in any case, rather precise.
Would You Like to Add the Church to Your Last Will and Testament?
In Finland, churches have the legal possibility to receive donations willed to them through last wills and testaments.
For more information, please contact the Financial Office of the Diocese. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, phone: 050 462 1522.