Nathan Söderblom Wins Nobel Peace Prize
Lars Olof Jonathan Söderblom (15 January 1866 – 12 July 1931) was a Swedish clergyman, Archbishop of Uppsala in the Church of Sweden, and recipient of the 1930 Nobel Peace Prize.
He is commemorated in the Calendar of Saints of the Lutheran Church on July 12.
Söderblom was born on a farm called Trönö, today Söderhamn Municipality, Gävleborg County. His father was a priest and a devoted Christian with a strong personal faith.
He enrolled at Uppsala University in 1883. Although not initially convinced what he wanted to study, he eventually decided to follow in his father's footsteps. On returning from a journey to the U.S., he was ordained priest in 1893.
During the years 1892 and 1893, Söderblom was first vice president and the president of the Uppsala Student Union.
In 1912, he became a professor of Religious studies at Leipzig University. But already in 1914, he was chosen to become archbishop.
His leadership of the Christian "Life and Work" movement in the 1920s has led him to be recognised as one of the principal founders of the ecumenical movement, and he was a close friend of the English ecumenist George Bell.
For seven years, from 1894 to 1901, Söderblom preached in Paris, where his congregation included Alfred Nobel and August Strindberg, as well as Swedish and Norwegian painters, authors, businessmen, diplomats, and visitors to the city. Summers he spent in Calais in research and writing while also serving as chaplain to Swedish seamen in the area. Meanwhile he pursued graduate studies in theology, history of religions, and in languages predating those of the classical ages, and eventually became the first foreigner ever to earn a Doctor of Theology degree at the Protestant Faculty of the Sorbonne.