Swedish Church declares itself trans inclusive

(Photo: Unsplash/Jonathan Brinkhorst)

The Church of Sweden has declared itself pro-trans while also attacking feminists and so-called "radical right-wing Christian groups".

In an open letter, the Church, which is the largest Lutheran denomination in Europe, said it was writing to the trans community "from a church that is also trans"..

"A church is made up of people. People are different," the letter says. 

"We have confirmees, employees, churchwardens, elected representatives, nonprofits, and other parishioners who define themselves as trans people. The church also consists of trans people." 

In addition to criticizing conservative Christians, the letter also takes a swipe at "trans-excluding" feminists, while saying that it wants to fight "narrow gender norms".

The letter has been signed by around 1,000 Church members, priests and deacons, and is published on the website of Västerås diocese.

It also accuses the media of being biased towards people with conservative views of gender, which it says has given rise to a climate of "hatred". 

"This contributes to the normalization of trans hate," they claim.

"We believe in a church and a God who welcome people beyond power, national boundaries, ethnicity, sexual orientation, sex, and gender identity.

"A humanity in all the colors of the rainbow, absolutely amazing and infinite in its diversity. We are different and that is good. And God saw that it was good."

The liberal Church has permitted gay wedding ceremonies since 2009. In 2017, it ordered priests to use gender-neutral language to speak about God instead of traditional male pronouns and terms of reference.