Church retarred

Posted: July 2, 2013 in Photography
Tags: , ,

I went for a walk the other evening. Usually if I go for a walk, I walk near here but this time I decided to drive to the nearby town (or technically a village). I know this town well but it’s not often I’ve seen it in the evening. It’s not that busy any time but in the evenings it’s so quiet plus I like the light at this time of day when everything is golden and the shadows are long.

This is the ‘new church’ of Sodankylä. It was built 1859 to replace the ‘old church’.

Sodankylä 'new' church, Lapland

I don’t have any pictures inside the church but it’s very spartan. Wooden benches, wooden walls, just a bit of colour, not many decorative items, couple of stained glass windows and nothing is dripping in gold. That’s all. I like spartan-looking churches.

Sodankylä 'new' church, Lapland

This is the ‘old church’ of Sodankylä. It was built 1689. It’s one of the oldest wooden churches in Finland. It’s rather small and if the ‘new church’ was spartan, this one is then über-spartan. It was renovated 1926 when some of the materials and methods were modernised but in 1992 it was renovated again and this time everything was done according to the materials and methods of the time the church was originally built.

Sodankylä old church, Lapland

During the walk that evening I could smell tar. I assumed someone had a barbeque on but as I got closer to the church I realised that the church had been re-tarred. It glowed in amazing shades of reds and browns.

Sodankylä old church, Lapland

Some of the walls hadn’t been re-tarred yet and as this wall didn’t get the sun either, it looked weirdly like part of the church is in black and white. Isn’t the roof amazing though? All of those pieces have been hand-carved and they are all placed with the wood grain the same way – like it would have been done all those centuries ago. I walked past this church again just a couple of days ago and now it has pine needles and pollen and stuff on it and it looks nothing like it did this evening when it didn’t have a speck of anything ruining the look.

Sodankylä old church, Lapland

The ‘old church’ and the graveyard is circled by a fence which looks rather like a very square centipede. The old and new church are at the opposite ends of the graveyard.

Sodankylä 'new' church, Lapland

The noticeboard just outside the old church doesn’t really go with the 17th century design but I really like the lady image.

Noticeboard outside Sodankylä old church, Lapland

Here’s a close-up. ‘Minä uskon’ means ‘I believe’, and although I don’t, I find this very inspiring. It would make a wonderful stamp! Could she be the church retard??

Noticeboard outside Sodankylä old church, Lapland


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