Swedish Marriage Legislation Presented

Timothy Kincaid

January 21st, 2009

In November we reported that Sweden is on track to have legal same-sex marriages by May of this year. Now legislation has been entered to make the change.

Stefano A

January 21st, 2009

According to the proposal, pastors who do not want to perform a same-sex wedding ceremony would have the right to refuse, something gay rights’ activists criticised.

The Swedish Association for Sexuality Education said that gave “authorities a legal right to discriminate”, and suggested that all religious communities’ right to perform marriage ceremonies be withdrawn.

I have to confess, I’m a bit bewildered by this SASE position and wish a bit more clarification had been provided.

Are they suggesting the state prohibit churches performing one of their sacraments or that the state simply not recognize as a valid marriage church performed ceremonies and thus all ceremonies would be performed by some kind of state entity?

Stefano A

January 21st, 2009

Also, I would find it rather suspicious that all Swedish gay activists share the SASE position. I tend to think the AFG reporter fell victim to a common media tendency, to refer to one particular organization as thee authoritative activist voice, rather than stating, for example, one prominent gay activist organization stated . . . .

Stefano A

January 21st, 2009

… “the AFG”. I meant AFP (Agence France-Pressé).

Timothy (TRiG)

January 22nd, 2009

that the state simply not recognize as a valid marriage church performed ceremonies and thus all ceremonies would be performed by some kind of state entity

I don’t know about Sweeden, but this is the case in France and many other European countries, and has been for a long time. A good idea, in my opinion. It helps people to separate in their heads the legal and the religious/cultural/emotional aspects of the event, if the two occur at different ceremonies (often on the same day).

Usually, I think, couples are married by the mayor in the town hall, and then move down the street to be married by the priest in the church.

I like it.


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