Take Me To Church

One of the things that is often admired on urbex photography sites are abandoned churches. Amazing photographs of old religious buildings have really rocked the internet.

But they are from abroad. In Finland we really don’t have that many abandoned churches. The reason is very simple. As Lutherans have been the majority religion throughout the history of independent Finland, in most towns there has been only one Lutheran church building. In larger towns there are several, but as Finnish towns are relatively new, the church buildings are too. They also belong to the same central church, so there hasn’t really been much to abandon.

New churches have been built, when old ones have burned down. Often they have been built to the same location and the ruins demolished. That’s why abandoned churches can be counted using two hand fingers.

And as we were driving in the countryside in the quickly approaching night, we arrived to one of them.

The quality of the photo is a potato, but who cares. The ruin church of Pälkäne was built in the 15th or 16th century. It suffered greatly in a battle in the early 18th century and by the end of the century its foundations had started to sink.

The church was abandoned in 1839, when the new church was completed. The roof fell in a storm in 1890, and since then people have tried conserving the ruins bit by bit. In 2002 a foundation was founded to preserve and protect the site and gather funds to keep the place going.

Nowadays the place is a popular tourist attraction as well as a site for weddings and other Christian events. So it is in a very active use.

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So like the sightseeing tower, this one is an abandonment, which really isn’t an abandonment.

Published by desertedfinland

A Finnish Urban explorer & Photographer

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