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Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Norwegian angels?

Trondheim, or Nidaros, on the west coast of Norway, is an ancient pilgrimage destination, being the final resting place of St Olav who was killed in battle in the Trondheim fjord in 1030. The Synod of the Nordic and Baltic Deanery met at Michaelmastide in Trondheim, and besides the usual business transacted at a synod, there was a pilgrimage walk around the city, led by a Church of Norway priest whose full time job it is to welcome pilgrims and visitors to this place. 

On Sunday 29 September, the deanery representatives joined with their brothers and sisters of the Church of Norway for the Sunday Høymesse (High Mass) for the Feast of St Michael and All Angels in the ancient Cathedral, which is the northernmost medieval cathedral in the world. Some of the same architects worked on Nidaros and Lincoln Cathedrals.

The Dean graciously invited me to preach that day, to a congregation that filled the nave. The Presiding Bishop of Norway was the celebrant for the Eucharist, and our own Anglican priest and Reader in Trondheim assisted. It was a warm sign of the relationship of communion between the Church of Norway and the Church of England which has been brought about by the Porvoo Agreement.

The Very Revd Ragnhild Jepsen (Dean of Trondheim), the Rt Revd David Hamid, The Most Revd Dr Helga Haugland Byfuglien (Presiding Bishop of Norway), The Revd Mary Strømmen (Anglican priest in Trondheim),  Mrs Priscilla Beck (Reader in Trondheim)

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