Svenska kyrkan

Six months left until the church elections – 15,000 office-bearers to be appointed


Today, there is exactly six months to go until the church elections. Early voting up until election day and a web map of polling stations close to you are new features that will make it easier to vote wherever you are in the country.

In six months, 15,000 office-bearers will be appointed in the Church of Sweden’s decision-making bodies at various levels. Photo: Magnus Aronson/IKON.

The church elections will be held on Sunday 17 September 2017. At that time, all members of the Church of Sweden aged 16 years and over elect who will represent them for the next four years. Over 15,000 office-bearers will be appointed in the parish assemblies (for parishes/groups of parishes), the Diocesan Councils, and the General Synod (the national level). And there is still time to get involved. All nomination groups standing for election must be registered by no later than 18 April.

New features in this years elections
The period for early voting has been extended: Those who are travelling, working or studying in another location can vote early at any polling station anywhere across Sweden, right up until election day. Early voting opens on 4 September.
Web map: On and via the free app Kyrkguiden, all those entitled to vote will be able to locate polling stations in their vicinity. Each polling station provides digital group and candidate lists for the entire country.
IT development: For this year’s church elections, IT systems have been developed and adapted to contemporary needs. There will be less need to handle paper, and administration will be more efficient and reliable.

Time to register groups
Those who want to register a nomination group have until Easter. Your application/registration must have reached the diocesan office by 18 April at the latest.

To register a nomination group, you require the endorsement of a certain number of people entitled to vote in the church elections. For elections in parishes or groups of parishes, at least 10 people must endorse an application, while for the diocese you need the endorsement of 100 people and for the General Synod, 300 people.

Since the church elections in 2001,16-year-olds can vote. In order to stand as a candidate in the church elections, you must be 18 years of age by the day of the elections at the latest. In accordance with a decision taken in the 2014 General Synod, the goal is for at least 20 per cent of the members of the Central Board of the Church of Sweden, or groups it appoints, to be under 30 years of age.

* In total, 32,774 people stood for election (54 per cent women and 46 per cent men)
* There were 16,779 office-bearers to appoint. In total, over 797 different nomination groups took part in the elections (most only at the local level).
* 5.5 million people were entitled to vote – including 68,838 16-year-olds.
* 21 nomination groups participated in the elections to the General Synod, the Church of Sweden’s highest decision-making body. 2,513 people stood for election to the General Synod’s 251 office-bearers.




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