Gay president for Lutheran Finland? Hopefully :)
A post by Neil Hart on homosexuality, LGBTI, lesbian and gay stuff and the Lutheran Church of Australia.
I have a friend of Finnish descent. Finland is a very Lutheran country. 78% of the population are Lutheran and it is one of the largest Lutheran churches in the world.
He sent me a note as a follow up on my Mitt Romney/ US Presidential elections post.
Interesting read. He said i could share it with you.
(Caution!…Please note! Captions on photographs have not been checked and may not be entirely accurate. )
I know you’ve been following the American presidential pre-selection race quite keenly. I’ve also been following it and find it to be quite entertaining. I’ve also been following the presidential race of my birth country — Finland.
All eight major parties (yes, eight!) presented a candidate, which went to an election on 22 January. Two main contenders will now go to another round on 5 February. Sauli Niinisto (conservatives) received the highest number of votes. Pekka Haavisto (Greens) was second. So these two candidates will now be voted on 5 Feb to elect the new president of the republic. What makes this interesting is that Pekka Haavisto is married, to a man. He is obviously openly gay.
This is something that has not been seen as an issue anymore than if Haavisto was left handed. And it has not really been even discussed during the election campaign. Haavisto is a capable politician who holds the nation’s trust — which is obvious from the amount of votes he received in the first round. A significant number of my friends in Finland (including Lutheran priests) openly support Haavisto. It may well be that Haavisto won’t get across the line on Feb 5. But wouldn’t it be an interesting scenario if he did.
And it would be even more interesting if a republican candidate won in the USA in November. And it would be extremely interesting if there was a visit from the Finnish president (with his husband) to meet the newly elected republican president in the USA (and his Barbie wife)! One could sell tickets to that one! Talk about a clash of cultures.
I thought I’d email you this as an encouragement — some societies have progressed to value all human life as the same. And yes, Finland is a deeply Lutheran country. And yes, I have been tempted to pack my bags a number of times and move back. Just the other day i heard a local news report on the Australia Day celebrations. One old red neck was interviewed and he said: ‘We should celebrate Australia Day because of multiculturalism’ (I thought, oh this is a change, this is good). But he continued: ‘There are people from all countries in Australia now and this isn’t good. We should be proudly Australian and let all people know that Australia belongs to Australians.’
And the reporter left it at that. Not a negative comment, no raised eyebrows. Nothing. ‘Go back to where you came from,’ was the message and the local news was proud to broadcast it.
Sorry mate. :( I hope you stay…I think we need a bit more of your Finnish kinda Lutheran here in Australia.
Hey! I can dream cant I? :)