Vidalin Icelandic Lutheran

Akra, ND

The history of Vidalin Icelandic Lutheran Church dates back to 1886, when the first Icelandic immigrants arrived in the Akra-Hallson area. Today, the historic church property and cemetery is stewarded by the Vidalin Icelandic Lutheran Church Cemetery Association. Although there is not an active congregation, the church offers three services a year as well as opens its doors for events for the larger community. One event is a Memorial Day service, held by the church each year since World War 1 to honor veterans from the congregation who served their country.

With a supporting grant of $12,500 from the Nordic Heritage Churches Project, Vidalin undertook several building projects to ensure the longevity of its role as a community anchor. The completed work included the installation of an accessibility ramp as well as the restoration of the sanctuary windows and hardanger altar paraments.

Vidalin also participated in Phase 2 of the program, and was awarded an additional $10,000 to commission four pieces of folk art. The artwork included a rod and display case for the World War II Veterans’ Banner which has hung since the 1940s, a watercolor painting of the historic altar, and the restoration of finishes on the original sanctuary doors.

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