Christ Church was once again filled with Scandinavian residents in Thailand in the afternoon of Christmas Eve. The special service during which the gospel is read in your own tongue – with other parts being read in other Nordic languages – is a very old arrangement at first initiated by Scandinavian Society Siam with the vicar of Christ Church holding the sermon. It may date as far back as to the second World War during which the Danish community were caretakers of the British institutions in Bangkok while the British had either managed to escape or – if they had been too self confident – were laying down railway tracks in Kanchanaburi or “comforting” Japanese officers at hotels in Bangkok.
Today, Scandinavian Society Siam is still part of the event, but since the establishment of a Church of Sweden in Bangkok, the association has taken a step back and only provides for a Merry Christmas glass of wine in the Church yard after the service. This year, the service was conducted by vicar Lars Ryderstad. The gospel was ready by Danish Consul Birgit Sarah Kondrup-Palmqvist Carlstedt, Norwegian Einar Davis, Swedish Per-Anders Andersson and – instead of Palli Steinarsson – Icelandic Consul Poul Weber.
The psalms were accompanied by organist Mabel Bandgren who also accompanied solo singer Trudi Carleson who entertained three times during the service and was rewarded with a big applause after her last performance.
Claus Gundersen, Scandinavian Society Siam’s treasurer, was host at the get-together outside the Church.
After the service a Finnish service was held.