Liberal Church leaders in Sweden have opposed an initiative aimed at showing support for persecuted Christians. After the murder of French priest Father Jacques Hamel by jihadists in July three Swedish priests started an initiative called Mitt kors (“My cross”) in which Swedish Christians took “selfies” with a cross to show solidarity with persecuted Christians. However, the initiative has been attacked by liberal church leaders apparently concerned that it might offend Muslims! The head of communications for the Church of Sweden even called it “seditious and un-Christian”. The Church of Sweden's attacks on the "My cross" initiative continued until one of the priests who had started it publicly left the Church of Sweden. In a newspaper article, Johanna Andersson, the priest who has resigned wrote:
"Church leadership has for several weeks been running a campaign against us who started the group 'My cross.' In this campaign, I have been discredited, called 'questionable', 'unclean', 'agitator', 'un-Christian' and attributed xenophobic hidden agendas."
The Church of Sweden’s campaign against the “My cross” initiative has led Dr Ann Heberlein, a lecturer in Theology at Lund University to accuse it of effectively replacing Christianity with Humanism. In a newspaper article commenting on the church’s stance she suggested that:
"The leadership of the Church of Sweden no longer wants to lead a Christian community; they want to lead a general ethical association for humanistic values of the most vulgar kind."