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Tuesday, 10 November 2009

New Bishop of Stockholm Consecrated (Church of Sweden)

The Church of Sweden is in the news again this week. On 22 October, the General Synod of the Church of Sweden approved the possibility of conducting same-sex marriages. This past Sunday 8 November a new Bishop of Stockholm was consecrated: the Rt Revd Eva Brunne. It is reported that Bishop Brunne is the first openly lesbian bishop in the world, as she is in a registered (and blessed) civil partnership with another woman.

Also consecrated at the same service in the Cathedral in Uppsala was the new Bishop of Härnösand (a diocese in northern Sweden), the Rt Revd Tuulikki Koivunen Bylund. Pictured above from left to right: Bishop Brunne, Archbishop of Uppsala Anders Wejryd, Bishop Bylund.

There were no Anglican bishops at the consecration of Bishop Brunne. The Area Dean of the Nordic and Baltic States of the Diocese in Europe, the Revd Nicholas Howe, will be one of the ecumenical guests at a later reception in her honour. The 4 Anglican Churches in Britain and Ireland and 6 Lutheran Churches in the Nordic and Baltic region (Sweden, Iceland, Norway, Finland, Estonia and Lithuania) are in a relationship of communion established by the Porvoo Agreement.


  1. David,

    Are you prepared to comment on where this, in your opinion, leaves the Porvoo agreement?

  2. that there were no Anglican bishops there is a shame.

  3. Peter, it is unclear what the long-term repercussions for Porvoo might be. There were some Lutheran Churches which did not have a bishop attending the consecration either, so the discussion to be had is across the board, not simply along Anglican-Lutheran lines. In terms of the text of the agreement, there was no specific reference to who may or may not be ordained bishop. However, there is reference to interchangeability being determined by the regulations of each Church. Of course, with the present rules of the C of E, that means that Bishop Brunne would not be permitted to officiate in the C of E on account of being a woman. I feel that before any specific alteration in any agreement is made, the signatory churches need to sit down and review this development. That has not happened yet.

  4. To say I am delighted would be putting it mildly ;-) Many years ago, back in Germany, in the EKD, we used to say:

    "The kingdom of God will have come to us, when the cardinals bring their husbands to the conclave."

    This event signifies a similar step in the same direction, the kingdom of God is a step closer to all of us ;-) SY

  5. hospitalera,

    Or, in this particular case, she'll bring her lesbian lover...

    Just because one wears the vestments and goes through the motions of ordination, does not make one a bishop. These are nothing more than pretend bishops.

    The Emperor is naked...

  6. these are not bishops but a joke

  7. Hi David,

    The (unfortunate) anonymous comment above spurred me to come back here and review the thread. To the best of your knowledge, has the conversation you were talking about above within the Porvoo Communion happened (or even been setup)?

  8. Hello Peter, yes it was an unfortunate comment from anonymous. As for the conversation, there is scheduled for this November a consultation across the Porvoo Churches, Lutheran and Anglican, on the Church's doctrine of marriage. I would be surprised if this did not touch upon the question of same sex marriage. Best wishes. D