Pastor Bettina Eckbo led the historic ceremony in the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church
In the very second that the clock struck midnight and the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church’s new liturgy allowing gay couples to marry in church weddings came into force, Kjell Frølich Benjaminsen and Erik Skjelnæs tied the knot in Eidskog Church.
A church synod voted on Monday to approve the new liturgy, or service, allowing same-sex couples to get married in the church.
“It was great fun and really cosy to be a part of,” Eckbo told NTB.
The newlyweds have lived together for 36 years – longer than Eckbo has been alive.
“They already represent the values that marriage is about – faithfulness and supporting one another on good days and bad,” she said.
The ceremony marks a new milestone for gays and lesbians in Norway, which like its Nordic neighbours is at the forefront of gay rights in Europe. Civil marriage and adoption have been open to gays since 2009 and the Church also authorises the ordination of homosexuals.
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