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Catholic World News

Oslo diocese fined for inflating membership figures

November 29, 2016

The Diocese of Oslo, Norway, has been ordered to pay a fine of one million kroner (about $117,000), for inflating statistics on the number of registered Catholics in the diocese.

The fine represents a sharp reduction of the original complaint against the diocese. Government officials had charged that the Oslo diocese obtained nearly $6 million in state subsidies by routinely registering immigrants as Catholics if they came from predominantly Catholic countries, without obtaining any evidence of the immigrants’ actual affiliations. The government charged that of the 65,500 new Catholics registered by the Oslo diocese between 2010 and 2014, more than 56,000 were not confirmed as Catholics.

Diocesan officials have conceded that the membership records were “unsatisfactory,” but denied engaging in any outright fraud. “This was cleared up long ago,” a spokesman said.

 
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  • Posted by: space15796 - Dec. 01, 2016 9:34 AM ET USA

    We hosted an exchange student from this country and that was the first I'd heard that government pays the church based on head counts. Why on earth would anyone think anything good would come of this arrangement?

  • Posted by: [email protected] - Nov. 29, 2016 7:34 PM ET USA

    Fraud. Another notch the church can be proud of. This is the what happens when government and Church hold hands.