The church of St Lawrence, Long Buckby has a beautiful building, beautiful rooms, useful for many things. The vicar of St Lawrence, Revd Graham Collingridge, felt it needed to be used more. The PCC had been looking for ways to engage with the village, so the idea of using the building for events seemed logical.
The curate at St Lawrence, Revd Andrew Smith, explained they were looking at all sorts of ways of reaching out to make the church space relevant.
“We wanted to serve the community and to be a resource rather than be a Sunday morning collective – to be part of village life again.”
The PCC were committed to the idea of making the church the centre of village life again.
Andrew said, “it’s really refreshing their determination. In the rural church today, it can be a struggle to feel part of the village life.”
They already had some traditional events, such as brass bands, and Christmas tree festivals. Then, the church had a chance to do something a little bit different.
An old friend of Andrew’s is in a band with the Icelandic popstar Hafdis Huld.
“I sent them a line to see if they would like to perform in something other than their usual concert space.”
Andrew said that Hafdis Huld has a bit of a cult following.
Her debut album, Dirty Paper Cup, was released in 2006 and won Best Pop Album at the Islandic Music Awards. After the release, Hafdis and her band toured with Paolo Nutini in the UK in a sold out tour.
In her recent album, Synchronised Swimmers, two singles went to number one in the Icelandic Chart.
Hafdis said yes and is coming to perform in St Lawrence church on 22 April at 7.30pm. Andrew said it would be an exciting and unusual event: “We can seat about 200. She only has two people in her band, so she’ll be performing from the traditional church preaching space.”
When asked if he had advice for similar churches, Andrew said the main thing was to try and think outside of the box.
“We have such a diversity of age, lifestyle, and mix of culture all around us. Try to see what’s available. There is always some opportunity with someone who has connections.
“Also, get together and pray together about your church space. When you pray and are a community – these things come up.”
“We so often see our church buildings as a burden; we can see them as the blessings that they are – as a resource.” For Tickets ring: 01327 844345