Today, His Majesty King Harald of Norway participated in the consecration of the new bishop of the Diocese of Stavanger. The ceremony took place in the Stavanger Cathedral, and it was Bishop Ivar Braut who was ordained as the new bishop in Stavanger. Ivar Braut succeeds the former bishop, Erling Pettersen. Before Braut became the bishop in Stavanger, he had been a priest in Birkeland Church in Bergen and Dean in Sunnhordaland. He also has extensive experience of working in the administration of the Norwegian church.
It all began with a solemn service in Stavanger Cathedral. The cathedral was packed in a timely manner before the service started, and His Majesty the King was one of the last to arrive at the church. Many of the guests were invited, but the church was also open for all those who wanted to come to the ceremony. Many people were still not able to enter the cathedral because it quickly became full. Bishops from Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and England attended the service.
Stavanger Cathedral is the oldest cathedral still existing in Norway. It originates from the first half of the 1100s and has been in continuous use as a cathedral since the 1300s; it is centrally located in downtown Stavanger – Norway’s fourth largest city. The King and the new bishop left the cathedral together and were photographed by the press on the steps of Stavanger Cathedral. After the service, a reception was held for specially invited guests in Stavanger Hall.
It is not often that the King is in Stavanger as it is only on special occasions like the one today. King Harald still has a separate manor that he uses as a residence for the times he is in these parts of his kingdom; the estate is called “Ledaal.”
The last time His Majesty was in Stavanger was in June of last year.