St. Olaf, The English Church, in Balestrad, Norway

olaf_sideOlaf from the Disney movie Frozen is one of my favorite movie characters. His unfaltering optimism is refreshing in a world where many lean the other way. So, when Spaceman and I were in Balestrad, Norway, I couldn’t believe our good fortune to stumble upon the church where Olaf came to life, St Olaf’s Church – also known as The English Church.

olaf_frontWe were exploring the town when we turned at a bend in the road and found ourselves staring at a beautiful church built-in the stave fashion. I love the craftsmanship of this style of architecture so we investigated more.

olaf_woodContinuing our good luck, the church was having a service that evening and, since it is an English church, it would be given in English…yes!

olaf_interiorThe interior of the church is all wood and glass. It is small, seating about 95 people, which brought a warm feeling to the place.

olaf_windowsThe challenge here is to stay focused on the sermon because the view out the side windows is spectacular.

After some people from Disney visited this church, they decided to use it as the inspiration for the chapel where Elsa is coronated (they slightly “stretched” the interior height for the film).

olaf_distantSt. Olaf’s Church was built by Knut Kvikne for his wife Margaret Sophia Green Kvinke. She was the daughter of an English clergyman who was positioned in Norway. They were married only four years before Margaret died of tuberculosis. However, Knut promised to build her an Anglican church which he did. The church was consecrated three years after her death. It stands today as one of Balestrad’s most beautiful buildings. Maintenance of the church is provided by the Kvinkes Hotel with funds donated by tourists.

For those of you who are not too familiar with Olaf from Frozen, here is a link that highlights his personality, enjoy!

4 thoughts on “St. Olaf, The English Church, in Balestrad, Norway

  1. I just watched this entire clip and feel 80% better than I did this morning 🙂 that church is gorgeous!!

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