A program for continuing education for religious leaders with a foreign background has had the impact of developing a common professionalism in being a religious leader in Norway and to better include foreign religious leaders into Norwegian society.
In 2007, the Faculty of Theology introduced the program as a result of a parliamentarian decision to offer a more thorough “knowledge of society” to religious leaders who have immigrated to Norway. As of 2019 it is running for the seventh time.
Being a religious leader in Norwegian society
The program “Being a religious leader in Norwegian society” consists of three modules, which headings are as follows:
- “Religion, legislation and human rights”
- “Values, dialogue and religious leadership”
- “Moral and religious counseling”
It is likely that the program has influenced the participants in their way of being a religious leader in Norway, focusing on human rights, counselling and interreligious dialogue. As the curriculum indicates, the participants in the program are invited to reflect on and dialogue about religious “codes” and cultural values in the Norwegian society. The program’s overall impact is to develop a common professionalism in being a religious leader in the Norwegian society. This might also lead to mutual changes in thoughts and practice.
The background of the project was a parliamentarian decision to offer a more thorough “knowledge of society” to religious leaders who have immigrated to Norway.