Quotations by church members, volunteers and employed staff.
- Right after my baptism I felt an inner satisfaction. Not because I felt that I had come closer to God but because I felt that I had obtained more control over my life and had put my life in order. In addition to this it is a good feeling to belong to the fellowship of the church.
Preben Rohde, baptised at age 50
- My interest in politics was awakened during the demonstrations against the Vietnam War. I wanted to help make the world a better place to live, and it’s still that same desire that fuels my involvement as a volunteer. […] As a Christian I let God lead me to find out where to spend my energy. There is an infinite number of places where it would make sense to help. But I believe that God shows us where each of us is to be involved.
Inger Dahl Jensen, 61, the Apostle Church, Copenhagen, one of three volunteers leading a women’s group for prisoners
- It’s important to spend time together and to have a meal together with other families once in a while. At Gospel & Carrots we have a great time singing, eating and talking adult stuff. […] Here we find the most important elements from the normal church service. We pray the Lord’s Prayer and we receive the Blessing, but the service is so short and children friendly that William does not get impatient, and that gives me peace and time to contemplation. I do not attend church on Sundays but I like the rituals of the church and I think it is important that William gets to know the church. Especially because he has been baptised.
Kjestine Kjergaard and her son William, the Advent Church, Vanløse
- My life’s journey shows it very clearly: God can create a development that we can’t even dream of. But that doesn’t mean that the journey is without challenges. That’s also the way I see the task that I face right now and the development [more migrants in the church] that I hope to start in the Evangelical Lutheran Church. It’s a dream that comes true: That I can use the gifts that God has given me to work as a pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church. I believe that God has a plan with me being exactly here where I can build bridges between Danes and migrants in Denmark.
Massoud Fouroozandeh, 41, the first pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark that has a Muslim background
- I love to sing. And we have so much fun in the choir. I have noticed that my voice has developed and that I have become better at singing since I started in the choir. And I have had a friend from the 9th grade that I have started talking with during the breaks in school. […] In my family, only my grandmother attends church every Sunday. But my family supports me in my involvement in the choir and they often attend the church services or the concerts when we give a concert. […] I think that having a faith can help you when you go through hard times.
Cecilie Schandorff, 14
- My friends comfort me and say that everything is going to be fine. But it’s hard for them if for example I start to cry. I can cry in the grief group. Here I can vent my feelings and I meet an understanding that I need. But we really do laugh a lot, too.
Bent Jansen, 67, member of a grief group, Kastrup Church
- No doubt, the highlight of the day was in church because it is so solemn and formal. The rest of the day was ‘just’ a party. In the church we all knew that we were serious about this. That now we are one body and we want to live together. And the whole family was present. To me, that means something.
Anna Diget Nielsen, married to Leif, mother of Emilie and Silje
- There is coffee, soup, a bed to sleep in and a possibility to talk or to play a game. People choose what they want and need. Being met with love is the only thing that works when people are out of their depth. They do not need a finger-wagging or a sermon. They need someone to talk to, someone who can see that they are human beings just like everybody else.
Michael Meyer, verger and volunteer in Kirkens Korshær (Danish Church Social; a voluntary organisation connected with the Evangelical Lutheran Church), Aarhus
- I like the idea that there are things happening in the church that have a very long tradition. It’s important to me that my children learn about that. […] I should like to talk with them about it if they initiate a talk. And it is important to me that they know the fellowship in the church. But I don’t ask them what they believe.
Mogens Steen Petersen, headmaster and father of two teenagers
- To me, the meditative church services are not about finding oneself – I did that a long time ago! The services are about seeking closeness to God and praying in silence. […] Many would probably say that the core of Christianity is to love one’s neighbor. But I think that there is more to it than that. First of all, it is central that you have the possibility of a new beginning.
Gerda Bjerregård, 62
- I enjoy the good talks that the children and I have. Together we ask a lot of questions; being able to ask questions is important. Church is about the big questions in life, and the children and I have an open minded approach. […] The children willingly talk about death and tell about the people they know and who have passed away. Then we visit their graves and light candles. And we talk about both sorrow and joy.
Charlotte Falkenberg Sloth, Ringkøbing Church
- I pray for people I meet here. In that way I pass everything that is difficult to witness over to God. There are many tough fates among the prisoners and ex-prisoners. But it is not only about prayers and songs. There is just as much of God’s presence in cooking. To cook is my way to show people that I care about them.
Arthur Lennert Kristiansen, 42, a trained chef and a volunteer in Exit, a project for prisoners and ex-prisoners
- In church we are together in different way than in school. In school we talk about being tired of going to school, and boys and girls don’t mix. But in church, during the preparation for confirmation, everybody talks about all sorts of things. About the possibility of some people being born evil, for example, about being nervous before English test in school, and about the things that we experience. One of the boys did not know whether he wanted to be confirmed or not, because he does not believe in God, and so we talked about it. […] I think that many people do not think about what it means to be a Christian. But they don’t know what they reject.
Anne Tinten, 13
- I don’t think that the church is very good at making publicity for itself or at explaining what it stands for. The same thing can probably be said about me and a lot of other Christians in the Evangelical Lutheran Church. In most of the settings that I know, faith is almost a taboo and I suspect that many people think that you are a bit of a village idiot if you say that you are a Christian and a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Maybe we need more village idiots who dare confess that they are Christians and openly declare what they believe.
Martin Prag, 32, a member of the KFUM-Scouts of Denmark
- My job has first and foremost been to meet people right where they are. I try to show them other says into the Church and into believing than the ones most people know – or imagine.
Jette Dahl, Denmark’s first pastor for spiritually-seeking people, Diocese of Ribe
- We often discuss, in the committee, whether it’s the task of the church or not to organise the lectures that we propose. But I think that as long as the topics and the speakers have a connection to church life, it’s okay. And then we do have a special audience in mind. Our lectures take place in the morning, which means that it’s in particular the elder generation that benefits from them.
Jørn Alhof, 77, member of a committee organising folk high school lectures
Interviews can be found in their full length in Danish here.