The Swedish Church has voted yes to gender-neutral marriage-ceremonies. The national church-council voted with the numbers 178 yes and 68 against. Before this historic vote it was possible to get partnerships blessed but a formal wedding as not accepted. About 80% of the Swedish population is a member of the Swedish church (even if the vast majority only attend
services twice in a life-time), and all their churches are now open for proper gay-marriages. Individual priests can still choose not to wed same-sex couples but every congregation has the obligation to provide someone who will.
As a background Swedish parliament voted yes to gender-neutral marriages which became law 1st May, 2009, replacing their old partnership-laws. Since marriage is considered a judicial term, and not a religious, it also comes under the non-discriminatory act. The result is that any congregation that would not allow anyone who wanted to get married, would loose their legal marriage licence.
Click here as the Hump Day Crew cross to Sweden to discuss the changes with Scandinavian IGLTA representative, Tobias Holfelt.