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WFWP Sweden -Vadstena -A historical journey

A weekend of togetherness and sharing, connecting to historical times and the religious root of the country,

giving us a greater understanding of Sweden previous to the secular country of today.

In September WFWP-Sweden invited friends to a historical journey to Vadstena: A site closely linked to holy Birgitta (Bridget) of Sweden. In the 14 th century, Sweden was a catholic country with a lot of internal power struggles among the ruling royal clans and with the plague as a overshadowing threat to both rich and poor in the everyday life.

Birgitta was a strong woman that early in life had revelations and visions. After giving birth to 8 children and after her husband died she became a nun and a very influential person that gave advice and scolding to both kings and the pope. She had a lifelong dream and a very detailed plan to establish a new monastic order and to build the monastery in Vadstena. Many pilgrims have through the centuries travelled to Vadstena to visit the monastery and the big Blue church.

The Pilgrim center, established by the Swedish Lutheran church 25 years ago is situated right next to the big Blue church. It is a generous but humble place open for everyone as a place of contemplation and sharing. It has its daily rhythm of prayers in which all are invited to join in. It’s a refuge and invitation for the modern stress ridden man to take on an internal challenge and also a pilgrim walk in beautiful nature.

So to Vadstena we travelled, from different locations in Sweden, brothers and sisters : We joined the rhythm at the center and we walked. We ate simple meals and we shared thoughts and silence. In the evening we could

attend the Premiere of “Moments from my life” a monologue portraying Birgitta in different stages of her life.

The whole weekend was historical, magical, heartwarming and wonderful.

A vision appeared: In the future we will travel back to Vadstena with brothers and sisters from all faiths and many places and we will all walk together for peace.

Report by Britta Houston


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