7,800 leave church of Finland within day of gay marriage vote
Archbishop ‘rejoiced’ when parliament approved gender-neutral marriage
01 DECEMBER 2014 | BY DARREN WEE
Photo via Wikipedia
Nearly 8,000 Finns have left the official state church after the country legalized gay marriage on Friday (28 November).
The Archbishop of Finland Kari Mäkinen said he ‘rejoiced’ when the law was approved, which seems to have caused a spike in resignations from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.
Between the bill’s passage on Friday and midnight on Saturday, 7,800 people left the church via an online service designed to ease the resignation process, according to Yle news agency.
The Finnish parliament narrowly approved gender-neutral marriage by 105 votes to 92, making the country last of the Nordic nations to legalize gay marriage.
Three out of four Finns claim membership to the state church, which is directly funded by taxpayers.