The Danish Parliament has abolished the Holy Day of Prayer holiday. Thanks to this, funds in the amount of about EUR 400 million are to appear in the Danish budget. The resulting savings are to finance the increase in expenditure on the military. The decision of the parliament aroused opposition.
The Danish parliament, Foketing, after a debate lasting several hours on Tuesday, voted to abolish from next year the holiday on the Great Day of Prayer.
“Due to the current situation in Europe, we need to spend more money on defense and security,” the social democratic prime minister argued Denmark Mette Frederiksen, referring to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Denmark gives up a day off
The decision to abolish the holiday, which was introduced at the end of the 18th century to replace other abolished church holidays and falls on the fourth Friday after Easter, caused objections in Denmark, not only from the opposition. Protesters included trade unions and the Lutheran Church of Denmark. Calls for a referendum on the matter were unsuccessful.
The resignation from the day off is expected to save 3 billion crowns (€400 million) and boost the defense budget. Danish authorities want to increase military spending to 2% of GDP in connection with the Russian invasion of Ukraine GDP by 2030.
In Denmark, 73 percent of the population of 6 million belong to the Lutheran Danish National Church, although only 3% belong to the Lutheran Church of Denmark. regularly attends church services. In recent years, the spring festival is mainly used by the Danes for outdoor recreation.
Main photo source: Liselotte Sabroe/PAP/EPA