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.” Today, it is considering applying once again given the circumstances, the local newspaper Smålandsposten reported.
“As I was explained, there is a residential area there, hence the refusal,” vicar Ingvar Fogelqvist told the Nyheter Idag news outlet.
Instead, the church was allowed to use a small clock inside the building to announce the beginning of the service. According to Fogelqvist, it “sounds good, but doesn’t reach too far.”
Last week, the Växjö mosque was allowed to have prayer calls every Friday at a solid volume of 110 decibels, which compares well to a rock concert or a turbo-fan aircraft at takeoff. According to the police, who found that the calls would not disturb the environment and issued an annual permit, the exact content of the message was never taken into consideration, despite previous warnings that the Växjö mosque had been publishing extremist messages on its Facebook page.