Russian Patriarchate suspends relations with Church of Sweden

Moscow, Russia - The Moscow Patriarchate has suspended relations with the Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Sweden after it decided to establish an official ceremony on blessing homosexual couples.

"We have received with great disappointment and grief the news that not only does the Lutheran Church of Sweden not oppose so-called homosexual marriages, but has even ruled to establish an official blessing ceremony," Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church said in a statement at a session in Moscow on Tuesday.

The members of the Synod believe that the Church of Sweden's decision contradicts the Biblical concept of family and marriage "and the testimonies of the Holy Writing leave us no doubt that homosexuality is considered a sin and 'confusion'," the statement says.