This visit will be led by Andrew Wingate, an Anglican priest, long
associated with Christians Aware. Andrews ministry has been in South
India, in Birmingham and in Leicester. He is now Honorary Inter Faith
Adviser to the Diocese of Chichester, where he lives now in Lewes. He is
also a trustee of Voices in Exile, the refugee project based in Brighton.
He has written or edited eight books, including being one of two editors of
the 2016 book Why Interfaith? Challenges from Northern Europe. He has
had a long association with the Church of Sweden.
Hala Youssef is in her early 20s, and comes from a Syrian refugee family,
who have faced various traumas. She is active in the Church of Sweden,
and is also a member of the Syrian Orthodox Church. She has studied
Political Science at Linkoping University, and is now studying MA
International Relations at the University of Sussex and has known Andrew
from his visits to her city and church, and through her coming over to
Leicester. She has taken part in a Christians Aware Summer School and an
Annual Conference. Hala is dynamic in personality, active in many fields
and also very reflective about Syria and about her own Swedish context.
The visit will involve visiting two contrasting Dioceses. First, we will go to
Gothenburg, the large and beautiful sea-city in South West Sweden. Here
is one of the two multicultural Anglican churches in Sweden, at which we
will worship. There are large populations of immigrants in Gothenburg, the
majority refugees, in recent times from the Middle East, and before that
from places such as Bosnia and Chile. There has been considerable
engagement with them, in which the Church of Sweden has been much
involved, and where several of the parishes are now highly multicultural.
We will go on to Halas city of Norrkoping, about four hours north east
of Gothenburg. There we will visit an Orthodox parish, and Halas
parish of St Johannes, which has been in the forefront of multicultural
work. We will also visit Vadstena, a beautiful monastery, home of the
Birgitta sisters, in the Diocese of Linkoping, which is the Cathedral city
of the Diocese, of which Norrkoping is a major part.
Both these Dioceses have had long involvement with other faith
communities and refugees. We will hear from those with great experience
in both. We will learn much about the Church of Sweden, and its outreach
work, and have at least one meal with Syrians.
Anglicans and Scandinavian Lutherans are associated closely through the
Porvoo Ecumenical agreement, first established in 1992. A rich outcome of
this has been combined inter faith engagement, since 2003, of which
Andrew has been a pioneer from the British perspective.
Travel will be by Norwegian Air from Gatwick to Gothenburg, and back from
Stockholm Arlanda to Gatwick.
Airfare - currently around £100 Return
Internal Costs - £693.00
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