– I am a Sami (Editors note: Norway’s indigenous people) and proud of it, but our flag gives me no pleasure. It is aesthetically ugly and filled with an occult message that I absolutely can’t relate to. A Christian cross would have included much more, says Pastor Malvind Børresen to the Sami newspaper Ságat.
Børresen is Pastor of “Himmelriket” (English: The Kingdom of Heaven) Pentecostal Church in Tana, Finnmark County. He believes the Sami flag is full of pagan symbols.
– Why not use the cross which the Sami and Nordic people have in common, Børesen asks.
He emphasizes that he has nothing against his own people, or the flag. It is the content he does not like.
In the fall, the pastor will be running for candidate in the Sami Parliamentary Elections and wishes to debate the issue.
– My first concern is that the flag only contains spiritual and occult elements drawn from a selective part of the Sami history. The flag contains really nothing else, Børresen claims.
The flag is the same for all Sami people, no matter in which country they live. It has the Sami colors and a circle symbolizing the sun (red) and the moon (blue).
The flag is inspired by the Sami drum and the poem “Paiven parneh” (“Beaivvi bártnit”) by Southern Sami Anders Fjellner (1795-1876) and was created by the Sami artist Astrid Båhl from Skibotn in Troms County. It was officially approved in 1986 at the 13th Nordic Sami Conference in Åre, Sweden.
Today, the flag has official status in Norway but it is not a national flag.
Comment by ThorNews:
Like many Sami and Sami politicians, ThorNews totally disagrees with Pastor Børresen and his view of the flag. Today, the vast majority of Samis are Christians, and the flag symbolizes several thousand years of history. The oldest written source about Norway’s indigenous people dates back to the year 98 AD, described by the Roman historian Tacitus.
After a long period of repression and frustration, the Kautokeino Rebellion took place.in Kautokeino parish on 8 November 1852 when a group of Samis attacked representatives of “The Official Norway”. Insurgents killed the merchant and the sheriff of Kautokeino, set fire to the house of the merchant and whipped the parish priest and members of his household.
To look down on the Sami flag is to look down on an entire group of people – in this case Børresen’s own kind – and its unique culture. Norway’s indigenous population was suppressed and integrated by force into the Norwegian society. Norwegian representatives and the Church have played a very negative role all the way back to the 1600s.
In ThorNews’ opinion, the flag is beautiful and the colors and symbols reflect the Sami cultural tradition. We can not see, in contrast to pastor Børresen, any traces of occultism. If he believes that all Christian nations should have a cross as a flag symbol, we must disappoint him: Many national flags in countries where the majority of residents are Christians, do not contain crosses. Some of these nations include USA, Italy, France, Ireland, Germany, Netherlands, Brazil, Argentina … the list is long.
Bottom photo:”Samis and Reindeer”, 1970. Photographer unknown.