Norway: WHY MY PEOPLE NEED THE GOSPEL
Enoch Chui | JUNE 12, 2019 | 2 MIN READ
During June, SOLA will be publishing a series, “Why My People Need the Gospel” to highlight the global need for the good news of Jesus Christ.
To pray for God's kingdom work more effectively, we must learn about those we are praying for so that we can pray more specifically and intentionally. Therefore we will be publishing short guides written by people of those countries so we can exhort the body to pray for all nations. Please note that these responses are just snapshots of the complex socio-political issues of the countries and are not all-encompassing.
We hope this series will encourage and challenge you to pray globally for all nations to be united under the rule of Christ.
Norway is a Nordic country located in northern Europe, with the Atlantic Ocean on the west and Sweden on the east. About 81% of Norwegians are part of the Church of Norway, which was the official state church until 2017. But only 10% of Norwegians attend church once a month or more often.
Enoch Chui, who lives in Oslo, the capital of Norway, shares his unique experience as an immigrant who has lived in Norway for the past 19 years.
SOLA: What are some of the major cultural struggles your church faces?
EC: At our church, there are many parents who want their children to learn Chinese at church. There is more importance placed on the fact that Sunday school is done in Chinese, rather than on the actual content. They want their children to learn the Chinese language and culture more than about God and faith.
SOLA: What are some of the biggest barriers to Christianity for Norwegians?
EC: People are very comfortable in Norway. There is "no need" for God. The living standard here is one of the highest in the world, and it is hard for people to see the church as something important.
The Lutheran Church, which was the state church in Norway (but is no longer), has seen a downward development. Church has become a tradition and people go there only for funerals, weddings, and children’s baptism. In fact, people would baptize their children because of tradition and then never return back to church.
SOLA: How can we pray for Norway and Norwegians?
EC: Norwegian culture is a very "private" culture. You can believe what you would like as long as it doesn't affect anyone else. Pray that people are willing to listen and open up their hearts for the Gospel.
This culture of privacy also affects Christians in the country, and it is hard for a lot of Norwegians to share their faith. Pray that God will help us to break out of this bubble, and be more bold for the gospel.
Enoch Chui attends Nordic Chinese Christian Church in Oslo.