Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Viborg, Denmark and Its Baptist Church

Viborg, about 86 miles west of Copenhagen, is a city and municipality situated in the Central Jutland peninsula. The city has a population of about 35,000 with the larger municipality having close to 100,000 residents. The city of Viborg dates back to the 8th century, settled by Vikings. Viborg municipality, reputedly Denmark’s second largest, has a land area covering more than 560 square miles. Viborg city is the administrative seat of both Viborg municipality and Region Midtjylland, as well as of the Western High Court, the High Court for the Jutland peninsula. The name Viborg means Holy Hill and the city's skyline is indeed dominated by the Domkirke, the historic cathedral of the Viborg Folkekirke bishopric located at the highest point in the city. Viborg has a fascinating Christian history dating from before the Reformation and after. The Reformation was a historical event that ever after transformed the religious life and practices of the area and, for that matter, of the entire nation. The history of the coming of the Reformation to Viborg is given briefly on the following webpage: http://www.thereformation.info/denmark.htm.

Today not only are there numerous and historic Folkekirke (Lutheran) churches in Viborg and the surrounding municipality but also several active free churches, including Viborg Baptist Kirke (Baptist) Viborg Internationale Pinsekirke (Pentecostal), Viborg Apostolsk Kirke (Apostolic), and Viborg Adventkirke (Seventh Day Adventist).

Viborg Baptist Church is one of the churches I visited on my last trip to Denmark, a church dear to my heart for the hospitality extended to me by members Dr. Torben and Rita Rouland and also because of its close proximity to my mother’s birthplace in Sparkær (Fjends), a village only a few kilometers from Viborg. Though small, as are many of the free churches in Denmark, Viborg Baptist Church comprises a fellowship of fine, faithful members and attendees. The past several years have been difficult for the church as it has been without pastoral leadership. However, the church continues to function under dedicated lay leadership and has great potential for growth and for influence in the city and municipality. The church’s website may be viewed in Danish at
www.ViborgBaptistKirke.dk .

PRAY that the Spirit of God would bring a time of spiritual revival and renewal to the churches of Viborg city and municipality.

PRAY that by His sovereign grace God would soon provide the Viborg Baptist Church with dynamic pastoral leadership to help move the church’s ministry and outreach forward.

PRAY that the members and attendees of Viborg Baptist Church will not be discouraged or disheartened but remain faithful in prayer believing God in His timing will surely provide the pastor the church needs.