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Soren Andersson, RFSL

A Swedish court has sentenced Pentecostal pastor Ake Green to a month in prison, after he was found guilty of offending homosexuals in a 2003 sermon. According to a June 30 report from Ecumenical News International, Green had described homosexuality as "abnormal, a horrible cancerous tumour in the body of society."

Responding to the sentence, Soren Andersson, the president of the Swedish federation for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights (RFSL), said that religious freedom could never be used as a reason to offend people.

Sweden passed a constitutional amendment in 2002, including sexual orientation in a list of groups protected against "unfavorable speech." A similar law (Bill C-250) was passed recently in Canada. While opinions based on a religious text were excluded from the Canadian law, many advocates fear that this clause may prove insufficient to protect Canadian clergy from similar action.

Pray that Christian leaders throughout the world will be willing to stand for the truth of the Bible, despite laws opposing them. For the first time in their thirty year history, The Voice of the Martyrs will be focusing on religious liberty in Canada in the August edition of their monthly publication. To receive your copy, subscribe today to The Voice of the Martyrs publication (click here).

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