About us

Welcome to the Nordic Catholic Church – UK Administration

Fast Facts

Historical sketch

  • The Nordic Catholic Church was founded in 1999 in Norway by numerous clergy and laity of the Norwegian (Lutheran) state church, who objected, for theological reasons, to the ordination of women to the presbyterate and episcopate, and had come to embrace the Orthodox Catholic faith of the undivided Church of the first millennium.
  • At its inception, the Nordic Catholic Church was formed as an extraterritorial diocese of the Polish National Catholic Church of North America, which belonged to the Union of Utrecht of Old Catholic Churches for more than 96 years (from 1907 to 2003) and indeed was its largest member church. While part of the Union of Utrecht, she remained in communion only with those (few but populous) provinces of the Anglican Communion that had not purported to ordain women to the priesthood.
  • The Polish National Catholic Church and thus also the Nordic Catholic Church did not recognize, for theological reasons, the female priests which several of the other member churches of the Union of Utrecht had unilaterally begun to ordain. Since the revised Statute of the Union of Utrecht did not allow for this situation of impaired communion to continue, the Polish National Catholic Church and the Nordic Catholic Church had to separate from the Union of Utrecht in 2003.
  • In 2011, the Nordic Catholic Church became autonomous through the election and consecration of a Norwegian bishop, the Most Rev. Dr. Roald Nikolai Flemestad. In the same year, the Polish National Catholic Church and the Nordic Catholic Church joined to found the Union of Scranton as an orthodox alternative to the Union of Utrecht. The Union of Scranton is open to other catholic churches and is in dialogue, for instance, with several jurisdictions of Anglo-Catholic tradition concerning potential membership.
  • Since 2021 the Scandinavian Diocese of the Nordic Catholic Church is led by Bishop Ottar Mikael Myrseth, whereas Bishop Roald Nikolai Flemestad, after having consecrated his successor for Scandinavia, remains Bishop of the Nordic Catholic Church in Continental Europe and the United Kingdom.
  • As of 2022, the Nordic Catholic Church has parishes and missions in Norway, Sweden, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Spain.

Theology, liturgy, and ecumenical recognition

  • The Churches of the Union of Scranton (viz. Polish National Catholic Church and Nordic Catholic Church) are theologically Orthodox: They profess the faith of the Undivided Church as summarized in the Old Catholic-Orthodox Agreed Statements, The Road to Unity (1975-1987), which constitute their foundational theological document.
  • Like the Orthodox Churches, both the Polish National Catholic Church and the Nordic Catholic Church have been in limited intercommunion with the Roman Catholic Church since 2006 (in accordance with can. 844 §§ 2-3 CIC). In particular, the validity of the holy orders and all other sacraments of the Polish National Catholic Church and the Nordic Catholic Church have been recognized by the Roman Catholic Church.
  • The Polish National Catholic Church has been a member church of the World Council of Churches since 1948; the Nordic Catholic Church is a member church of the Christian Churches of Norway.
Translate »