The Swedish town of Växjö has sparked a lot of controversy by granting the local Muslim Foundation permission to run prayer calls at a maximum volume of 110 decibels. By contrast, a local church had to confine itself to a small and “quiet” clock inside the building to be used for a similar purpose.
Saint Michael Church, which belongs to the local Catholic community, previously asked for permission to ring clocks, but, unlike the local Muslim Foundation, received a resonant “no.”
Actually, the Catholic Assembly in the city of Växjö has never sent in an application to call its members to worship and hence it has not been rejected.Neither Växjö municipality nor the local police authorities could find any traces of the alleged request. The fake claim to the contrary has had enormous spread on social media, both in Sweden and abroad. The original publication in the small Swedish local newspaper was corrected, but that did not happen in most international publications.
Furthermore, the Catholic parish’s request to use their church bells was supposedly denied ”10-15 years ago” – thereby eliminating any connection to the mosque’s application being approved today.
Smålandsposten’s editor-in-chief, Magnus Karlsson, regretted the initial article. ”I am disappointed that we published the article without enough evidence. But initially we didn’t have reason to distrust the information we received from the priest. We have followed up the article. But, as P4 realised, there is no formal decision" he said.