LÖVESTADT, Sweden—After fighting for legitimacy for more than two years, Spanish artist Carlos Bebeacua, Cardinal of the Madonna of the Orgasm Church, has had his petition rejected by Sweden's highest administrative court, apparently because the church's name would be offensive to Christians.
The church, which shares its name with a painting that Bebeacua exhibited at the 1992 World's Fair in Seville, Spain, was founded in the early 1990s, but when he attempted to register it as a religion in his adopted country, Sweden’s Legal, Financial and Administrative Services Agency (Kammarkollegiet), which oversees such matters, rejected the bid. However, Bebeacua appealed that decision to Stockholm County's Administrative Court, which allowed the registration to go forward.
But the Kammarkollegiet wasn't about to take that insult lying down, and appealed to the Administrative Court of Appeals, claiming that the church's use of the word "Madonna" would offend Christians, even though Bebeacua had already consulted with local Christians in Lövestadt and even the Church of Sweden parish priest, all of whom had no problem with his church's name. Bebeacua further pointed out that the word "Madonna" simply means "my lady" and doesn't necessarily refer to the Virgin Mary.
But the Administrative Court wasn't having any of it, ruling that, "In the opinion of the administrative court of appeal, the intention of such a combination of words, even in relation to the registration of a community for religious activities, must be to offend, not only for those within the wider circles of the general public who have Christian leanings, but also in society in general."
But apparently, the church will continue to exist, though in a non-registered capacity, with its members continuing to worship God through their orgasms.
"The orgasm is God, the orgasm should be worshiped," Bebeacua said. "The orgasm is the ultimate feeling of lust, it shouldn't be limited to ejaculation. You can reach it through art or by looking at a landscape and thinking 'Wow!'"