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June Pelo
10-09-04, 00:33
An article in The Finnish American Reporter states that Finland's Evangelical Lutheran Church faces a shortage of clergy in rural areas. There is no shortage of applicants for pastoral posts in Finland's larger population centers, but interest is waning for pastors' vacancies in remote rural areas. An estimated 500 new ministers will be needed in the coming decade - last year fewer than 30 graduates from theological faculties were ordained. Irregular working hours are said to be one reason why new pastors are not eager to apply for a position as parish pastor. The shortfall could lead to shutting down of parishes. One in four of the 80 parishes in the Swedish-language Porvoo Diocese are hanging in the balance.

June