Pastor Green before the Swedish Supreme Court
After Pastor Green's acquittal by the Appellate Court, the Prosecutor-General ("Riksåklagaren") on March 9, 2005 appealed the Appellate Court decision to the Swedish Supreme Court ("Högsta Domstolen; HD) in Stockholm, Sweden. And on May 8, 2005, the Supreme Court decided to hear the case. The trial was set for November 9, 2005 in Stockholm, Sweden. The public interest - both nationally and internationally - was very great indeed.
The hearing was a full day event and the audio link was broadcast live on Sweden's state-owned monopoly (Swedish Radio/TV). No TV broadcast was allowed. The format for these proceedings in Sweden was more or less a repetition of the trials of Pastor Green in the Lower Court in Kalmar and the Appellate Court in Jönköping. (Note: If you understand Swedish and want a link to the audio recording of the trial click here. The link is provided by the Ethiopian Jerusalem Evangelical Church JEC in Stockholm.)
Before the court played the recorded sermon, the Prosecution (Stefan Johansson) and the Defense (Percy Bratt) made some initial statements. Mr. Johansson first gave a brief summary of the alleged criminal acts. Mr. Bratt then introduced several amicus briefs that various American legal groups had submitted to the court in support of Åke Green. These briefs were from Advocates Europe (branch of Advocates International), The Becket Fund and The Alliance Defense Fund (an umbrella group for the Family Research Council, Christian Legal Fellowship, Focus on the Family and The Jubilee Campaign). There were no amicus briefs from Christian leaders in Sweden. Then the recording of Pastor Green’s sermon was played. However, this time the voice of Pastor Green on the tape was distorted and came across as a raspy dark voice. When the defense objected to this they stopped the tape, tried to fix it and claimed that it could not be fixed and that it didn't matter since all the five judges had already heard and understood what was on the tape. So the distorted sermon was played to the end.
1. The fact that the Archbishop K.G. Hammar never had (and never will) object to the onslaught of sodomy in Sweden is no surprise to many people. He and the apostate church he leads (The Swedish Church; swedish "Svenska Kyrkan") is today, sadly enough, reduced to a tool in the hand of the enemy of our souls. Last month his church voted - with a comfortable majority - to begin an act of blessing homosexual unions in their church. But first their theology had to be changed for this to happen. The old testament had already been thrown out the window. Relegated to what the archbishop refers to as the biblical junk pile (swedish: "skräpkammaren"). But the new testament presented more of a problem. But it was solved by tweaking the religion a little. From now on, when his church members read about what Paul and the new testament mean when it condemns homosexuality, it is to be understood that Paul meant it to be limited to promiscuous homosexuality. The faithful and beautiful homosexuality when a same-gender couple cares for one another in lifelong fidelity is very much something to be desired. It does of course still introduce a problem for people born with bisexual orientations who want to live in similar lifelong and mutually caring relationship with one partner of each gender. However, discussions have already started to bless trios and (in case of two bisexual partners) quartets of people as long as they are faithful to each other within the group. The question of whether infidelity of one of the four would break up the union of the other three remains unresolved.
Closing Remarks in the HD Court (Swedish: Slutplädering)
The defense argued that when it comes to reports on who is more inclined to be pedophilic (homosexuals or heterosexuals or bisexuals) there are conflicting reports out there. Percy Bratt also described at length the parts of the sermon that deals with the grace and forgiveness from sin that's available in Christ. He then addressed Pastor Green's use of the analogy of sexual abnormalities to "a cancerous tumor in society". He showed, by example, that this particular analogy is not an uncommon one in today's media and it never carries any connotation of instigation to violence. It merely implies that something is undesirable and that it has a tendency to spread (as is the case with homosexuality in Sweden today). In summary, the bottom line in Pastor Green's sermon is that Jesus loves all sinners and is ready to forgive and redeem. And we as believers must never show disrespect for any person but treat them with the love of Christ even though we can never accept sin itself as something normal and desirable.
There were 5 Supreme Court Justices listening to the case (out of 16 total Justices on the Supreme Court). Johan Munck chaired the proceedings and Göran Regner was the "referent" who is supposed to be the one most familiar with a given case. The other three sitting Justices ("Justitieråd") were Severin Blomstrand, Kerstin Calissendorff and Anna Skarhed. Justice Leif Thorsson was not called to sit even though Bo Svensson (Chief Justice) recognizes his special expertise in this area after buying homosexual sex from a 20-year old high school student.
This is how: In Sweden - as opposed to the US - the legislative branch (Parliament; Swedish: "Riksdag") works in parallel with the judicial branch. Each new law must pass the an institution called "Lagrådet" that tests the proposed law for compliance with the Swedish Constitution. Thus, the "Lagrådet" has already approved the new law (protecting the homosexual and bisexuals groups from being offended) as being an acceptable infringement on freedom of speech and freedom of religion. Half of the makeup of the powerful "Lagrådet" are Supreme Court Justices (called "Justitieråd"). Presently one of the Justices serving on the "Lagrådet" is Leif Thorsson who was recently caught in the act of soliciting homosexual services from a 20-year young man in Stockholm on a website administered by the all-powerful gay lobby in Sweden (RFSL) and supported by taxpayer money. Even though such prostitution is actually still a crime in Sweden, Mr. Thorsson - with strong support by the Chief Justice (Bo Svensson) and the other Supreme Court Justices - got away with only a slap on the hand (a minor token fine). For more information about this recent scandal click here.
With such strong homosexual support on the Supreme Court, combined with the fact the the new law has already been determined by the Lagrådet to trump the freedom of speech/religion, it no longer seemed a question of if but for how long Pastor Green would have to serve time in prison for his beliefs. But there were also those who believed that the fact that the Supreme Court has been criticized by some due to the scandal surrounding Leif Thorsson and Bo Svensson - combined with the fact that the Appellate Court actually acquitted Green - might provide a politically motivated impetus in the direction of an acquittal.Rally for Åke Green
After the trial on November 9, 2005, there was a rally in Stockholm in support of Pastor Green. It was arranged by Riksförbundet Kristen Tro och Livsstil (RKTL) with support from other Christian groups like Jerusalem Evangelical Church which is a church of Ethiopian immigrants in Stockholm. Click on the link titled “Marchen till stöd för Pastor Åke Green…” to view video clips from the March. Some 500-700 believers of the Bible marched from the Court Building to Sergels Torg where the rally was held. This shows that there is still a remnant of a true church in Sweden. Even though the homo lobby and it's sympathizers can easily muster many time this number of people, that's not the way to look at it. Since this is a battle between good and evil we have the Savior by our side. We have read the last chapter of the Bible so we are always full of Hope. Through prayer God can always turn things around in the most wonderful way. He specializes in turning that which the enemy meant for evil into something good.