A man who was fired for having an affair with a married woman recently received a favourable ruling from Sweden’s Labour Court. The court ruled in favour of a priest who said he was unlawfully terminated from his employment for having an affair with a married member of his congregation, according to reports in The Local.
The priest was fired after the woman’s angry husband informed the parish vicar and the bishop of the affair. The church leadership felt the priest’s actions were inappropriate.
The angry man directly confronted the priest several times and the two physically fought in October 2005. Police were unable to determine, in their investigation of the incident, which man struck first.
In a letter received by the priest in December 2005, the church leadership informed him that his actions and behaviour were seriously damaging the reputation of the church. The decision to terminate the priest was supported by the Swedish Church’s complaint board and the diocese in Vasteras.
In August 2006, the priest began legal proceedings, claiming he had been wrongfully terminated from his employment. The case was brought before the Vastmanland District Court, who ruled in favour of the priest.
The Labour Court reaffirmed the first decision and awarded the priest lost wages as well as compensation worth 100,000 kronor (USD 16,700) for the insult he received in losing his job.