|Visit to Denmark|
CELEBRATING PENTECOST WITH
SOME GREAT DANES!
For many years,
East Kilbride has been twinned with Ballerup,
a community in the greater Copenhagen area. Strong ties have been forged through mutual
visits of all kinds, with a Twinning Association operating in both towns. In recent years, the Old Parish has been in
contact with one of the churches in Ballerup – Skovlunde Kirke – and last
October, one of Skovlunde Church’s choirs, a superb girls’ choir, came on a
visit to East Kilbride. While they were
with us, their Minister, the Rev Henriette Ringaard, told us that at Pentecost
2012, Skovlunde Kirke would celebrate its 40th anniversary. And she
issued an invitation to us to come to Denmark
on that special occasion.
Thus it was that
on Friday 25th May, a party of eight, led by our Minister, the Rev
Anne Paton, flew from Edinburgh to Copenhagen.
We had a splendid time with some “ great Danes”. Saturday was spent on a
guided tour of Copenhagen itself, with Winnie and Johannes Joergenson as our
guides. They were the essence of
kindness and practical helpfulness. Of
course, we saw only a fraction of the city, but the weather was superb, and
what we did see – including a boat tour around the harbour area – has certainly
encouraged us to think about going again.
Our evening meal was provided by Mie Korp Sloth, who is the conductor of
the girls choir, and the Church’s full-time organist and music director.
brought us to Pentecost and the Service of Thanksgiving for these past 40
years. The day began (early!) with breakfast for us and the whole Congregation.
This was when we presented a model of one of the Iona Crosses – the St John
Cross – as a symbol and sign of our Christian friendship.
version of the same cross sits on our own Communion Table). The service included the Sacrament of Holy
Communion, and Anne was invited to share in distributing the Elements. Although
our knowledge of Danish is distinctly on the short side –( in fact, non
existent!), we could relate very well to
the Communion part of the service.
In the evening,
the Church Choir, musicians, soloists and the Girls Choir combined to sing
excerpts from Handel’s “Messiah”. Two of our party being choir members
themselves, joined the Danes for the Hallelujah Chorus. And then it was time to go home. Two members
of the congregation had been at the airport on Friday to welcome us and
shepherd us across the city to Skovlunde.
On the Monday morning, another lady took us back, on these amazing
computer controlled trains – no driver! We were back in Scotland by lunch-time,
and the sun was still shining! Now the
question is – what is the next step in our “church twinning” journey?