Lemland Church, also known as Saint Birgitta’s Church, is in the village of Söderby in Lemland Municipality. It is yet another one of the traditional red granite churches on the Åland Islands. It is today a part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland and it is also the center for the Lemland-Lumparland Parish. The parish also includes another church, the Saint Andrew’s Church in Lumparland, as well as the Lemböte Chapel Ruin.
According to common belief, the construction of the church dates to the 15th century. Excavations in the 1950s contradicted those beliefs, claiming that there used to be an older church and also of a predecessor constructed in wood. Today the theory is that the oldest parts of the church date back to the 13th century.
The large church tower was probably built around the year 1317. It is one of several additions done during the history of the church.
The interior includes several paintings, some of f which date back to the end of the 13th century. There are also several wooden sculptures, one of which is of Saint Birgitta. Saint Birgitta, or Bridget of Sweden, was a Swedish woman from Vadstena. She is one of the six patron saints of Europe and she lived during the 14th century.
Lemland Church is in Söderby, a small locality with around 350 inhabitants. It is the center of Lemland Municipality, a municipality that has a population of around 2000.
As with many of the churches on the Åland Islands, the church in Lemland is not only built with red granite, it is also located next to a grave field from the Iron Age.
Finding Your Way
You find Lemland Church close to the main road through the municipality. Road 3 between Mariehamn and Långnäs passes by Söderby and there are signs marking the church. The Swedish word “kyrka” will let you know when it is time to leave the main road and drive a few hundred meters along Norrbyvägen.
If you want to learn more about Saltvik Church, we can recommend you to have a look at kyrkor.ax >>
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