Building community Swedish style
Moving to a new country always poses some challenges and none more important than how to build genuine community. Each culture has its own different ways of relating, building friendships and growing community and as a newcomer it can sometimes take a while to work it all out.
Fortunately in Sweden there is a cultural habit that they may as well pass in to law that makes it much, much easier. It’s called ‘fika‘. Fika is like the old English habit of ‘elevenses‘ and it means ‘ to have a cup of coffee (or tea) with something sweet or with a sandwich and preferably in the company of colleagues or friends.’
When I say mean, that’s literally right because ‘fika’ isn’t just a name for a habit but a genuine verb – att fika which illustrates how ingrained the habit is in the everyday life of a Swede. So a good portion of our church planting budget (when we get one) will get spent on sticky buns, coffee and making time to talk with people. Fika is a heaven sent gift for a church planter, it really is.