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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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A first for Finns

Irja Askola, 57, was elected bishop of the Diocese of Helsinki, effective Sept. 1. She is the first female bishop in the 4.47-million member Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

She was elected in June over Matti Poutiainen.

The Helsinki Times reported that differences between the two included Askola's willingness to bless same-sex couples, whereas Poutiainen believes marriage is solely between a man and a woman.


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