Last September, we bid farewell to two of our closest friends, Andrew & Celina. They would soon be moving from Sydney (where they met, got married and had their daughter, Annika) to Denmark (far, far away) to help establish a new room in the Hillsong global house: Hillsong Copenhagen.
Last month, we had the wonderful privilege of visiting them in their new hometown. They had only been in their new apartment for 2 months when we arrived – perfect timing! Thanks to sweet Annika’s generosity, we were blessed with our very own room. Annika is an outgoing, fun and talkative little girl. Here she is making new friends at the park and laughing with her daddy. What a cheeky monkey!
We arrived on a Saturday evening and had just one night of catching up before a full Sunday at Hillsong Copenhagen. We loved it so much that we stayed for both services! It really felt like family, particularly since we know several people on the leadership team and there were a few other visitors from Australia.
In the afternoon, we took an opportunity to walk around the city a little bit. Check out this picturesque spot we found on the canal. Look familiar?
Another beautiful spot we visited in Copenhagen is Tivoli Gardens. Apparently, it’s quite famous. After a quick search on Wikipedia, I’ve discovered that it’s the second oldest theme park in the world (founded in 1843) and even Walt Disney’s inspiration to build Disneyland. Read for yourself.
Towards the end of the night, Andrew & Celina took us nearby to their favorite spot in all of Copenhagen: Nimb Bar. To call it a bar doesn’t really do it justice. It is an elegant and spacious room with an ambiance I’ve yet to discover elsewhere. Imagine stepping back into the Renaissance period, enjoying fine company and conversation with a fire set in a massive fireplace, a drink of your choice and impeccable service. Just divine.
Another family we visited is part of my own family! Last year, my cousin James married a beautiful Danish girl named Sarah, who then brought bright-eyed Viggo into the world near the start of this year. On our last day, we took a short walk to their place to spend a lovely afternoon together. Viggo jumped into my arms with a huge smile and a cuddle the moment the door opened! It was the BEST.
A perfect end to our time in Copenhagen was Andrew & Celina’s connect group (aka small group or Bible Study). We enjoyed meeting new people and hearing some incredible stories of faith and God’s provision.
I ended up chatting with an older lady named Berit for a while afterwards. She’s Norwegian by birth, but has been in Denmark for most of her life. Among many interesting stories, she told me about her visits to Israel and her love of the Jewish people. Kevin and I hope to get to Israel in the next few years, so I was just soaking it up! It never ceases to amaze me how God brings people together to be encouraged, enlightened and strengthened for the work He has set before us.
Another full week on the ‘Lingberries vs The World’ tour! We left Copenhagen grateful for the beautiful people in our life and their endless generosity and love. Scandinavia: it’s been fun.
Next up: we head south to the lands of Edam & Gouda cheese – The Netherlands!