Contemporary and Traditional Voices: Reactions to Same-Sex Marriage Legislation in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland and the Orthodox Church of Finland
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CitationMetso, Pekka. Kallatsa, Laura. (2018). Contemporary and Traditional Voices: Reactions to Same-Sex Marriage Legislation in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland and the Orthodox Church of Finland. Exchange: journal of missiological and ecumenical research, 47 (3) , 230-257. 10.1163/1572543X-12341488.
This article studies the debate on same-sex marriage in the early 21st century, within the two national churches of Finland, the Evangelical Lutheran Church and the Orthodox Church. Legislation facilitating the so-called “gender-neutral marriage” came into effect in Finland in March 2017. In their official teachings, both churches emphasize marriage as a union between a man and a woman. An awareness of the rights of sexual minorities has, however, increased in both churches, and has given rise to the debate on how same-sex marriage should be perceived. While holding on to the traditional view of marriage, both churches have sought ways to recognize and affirm the position of sexual minorities. This has caused tension within the churches. As the majority church, the Lutheran church in particular faces strong pressure to accept same-sex weddings in the church. For the advocates of sexual minorities within the Orthodox Church, recognition of sexual minorities seems to be the main objective, rather than promoting same-sex weddings