Swedish Pastorat

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A Pastorat (translated means Parish) is the geographical area that a minister has responsibility for within the Swedish Lutheran Church. It is made up of one, two, or more congregations (församlingar) depending on the circumstances. The head minister (Kyrkoherden) of the parish often had assistance by another minister called a Komminister (sometimes called Kaplan). The parish that the minister lives in is called the mother parish or moderförsamling. The other parish(es) in the pastorat is called the annex parish or annexförsamling. Multiple pastorats make up a Kontrakt. Sometimes the parish records of the whole pastorat would be kept in one book, other times there is a separate book for each congregation.


While you are searching for your ancestors in the parish records, you should find out:

  • If you are working in the moderförsamling or an annexförsamling.
  • If you are working in an annexförsamling and cannot find your people, check the records of the moderförsamling.
  • If you cannot find your people in the records of the moderförsamling, check the records of the annexförsamling.
  • Beginning in 1686 every Pastorat had to keep a record of christenings, marriages, and burials. Copies of the originals are available through SVAR, Arkiv Digital, Genline and Microfilm. The actual books are stored and preserved at the respective Landsarkiv (Regional Archive) within the National Archive System.


Johansson,Carl Erik. Cradled in Sweden. Logan: Everton Publishers Inc. 1995

Sveriges Släktforskarförbund Wiki Community., "Pastorat". Wiki-Rötter, January 2011.