Via Integra

Fr Mark's progressive Anglo-Catholic take on European Christianity

  • This is my collection of material about the current state of the churches in Europe. I am interested in looking at how they are dealing with the pressing issues of our time: the issues of gay people and women in ministry/ leadership are particularly pressing at the moment, as is the area of declining church attendance.

    I would like to see how Europe's traditional religious institutions are coping with the new Europe currently being forged, in which public opinion and ethical attitudes are becoming inceasingly pan-European, and are evidently presenting a series of strong challenges for the churches.

Finland – women bishops/gay issue

Posted by Fr Mark on May 16, 2010

The Church of Finland may shortly be getting its first woman bishop. Interestingly, attitudes towards marrying same-sex couples are also emerging as defining issues for episcopal candidates in Finland now.From Helsinki Times, 12.5.10

Out of the five candidates for the next bishop of the Finnish capital Helsinki, Irja Askola and Matti Poutiainen made it through to the second round on Tuesday.Rev Askola is the first woman to make it to the second round in episcopal elections in any diocese in Finland.One of the distinctions between views held by the candidates concerns marriage. Rev Askola would bless same-sex couples, whereas Rev Poutiainen believes that marriage is something solely between a man and a woman.The second round of voting is to be held on 3 June because no candidate received over half the votes of the electors on Tuesday.

Eero Huovinen, the current bishop of Helsinki, is to retire at the beginning of September.


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