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Suède

  • July 2008 : Same-sexe marriages (continued)

There is still no decison from neither the Government nor the Parliament in the matter of same-sex marriages. The Prime Minister has publicly said that a proposal from the Government to the Parliament will be given later this year. It is well-known, though, that the four political parties in Sweden that the present Government consists of are of different opinion in the question of same-sex marriages. Thus, one can so far only guess what the proposal will contain. A private bill in the Parliament from some members of the opposition regarding same-sex marriages was rejected by the Parliament earlier this year.

  • March 2007 : Same-sex marriages (continued)

The issue of same-sex marriages is widely debated in Sweden at the moment. The Government had appointed the former Chancellor to give proposals concerning a “sex neutral” Matrimony Act. The ex-chancellor presented his proposals in March, 2007. These proposals contain a sex neutral Matrimony Act. The right for churches and other religious communities to officiate marriages will remain. But no church or religious community – or any individual priest – will be obliged to officiate a marriage. This means that a church, that does not want to officiate marriages for same-sex couples, does not have to do it.
Sweden has today a Partnership Act – for homosexual couples – separate from the Matrimony Act, but marriage and partnership are in practice legally the same. The only difference today regards international effects. Most churches and other religious communities in Sweden have the right to officiate marriages. Registration of partnership, though, can only be officiated by the authorities.

The standpoints of the Swedish churches and other religious communities differ. The Lutheran majority church, Church of Sweden, has since some months an official blessing act for same-sex couples. The Church of Sweden has also declared its openness even to officiate registration of partnership. But the church wants the words “marriage” only to be used for a woman-man-couple.
Several other churches, among them the Roman-Catholic Church and the Pentecostal Movement, are strongly against any thought of same-sex “marriages”. They have opposed against the Church of Sweden decision on blessing of same-sex couples.

There is, so far, no decision from the Government or the Parliament in the matter of same-sex marriages.

  • June 2006 : Same-sex marriages

The issue of same-sex marriages is widely debated in Sweden at the moment. The Government has appointed the former Chancellor to give proposals concerning a "sex neutral" Matrimony Act. The ex-chancellor is expected to present his proposals in the beginning of 2007.

Sweden has today a Partnership Act – for homosexual couples – separate from the Matrimony Act, but marriage and partnership are in practice legally the same. The only difference today regards international effects. Most churches and other religious communities in Sweden have the right to officiate marriages. Partnership, though, can only be officiated by the authorities.

The standpoint of the Swedish churches and other religious communities differs. The Lutheran majority church, Church of Sweden, has since some years a statement of the bishops, which opens for the priests of the church to give blessings to same-sex couples. In some cases these "blessing acts" have come to be an "act of wedding". Last autumn, the Church of Sweden synod decided on an official blessing act for same-sex couples. The task was given to the Church Board to create the details of the act. The new act is planned to come into effect during the later part of 2006.
Several other churches, among them the Roman-Catholic Church and the Pentecostal Church, are strongly against any thought of same-sex "marriages". They have opposed against the Church of Sweden decision in the matter.
The churches are represented as an advisory group to the ex-chancellor. They will certainly make their different opinions known to him during his work.