This is a little pre -announcement about ‘community 2021’ or Kommunitet 2021.
We, Paul and Pal, were visiting Kommunitet 2019 in Broby as guest speakers from L’Arche UK/ England. We then mentioned that we might try to put together a ‘Kommunitet’ in England sometime in the future, and that future might be in 2021. However, there are a few issues to sort out before you can write it into your diaries.
- Because of Covid-19 we don’t actually know how the situation will be during next summer 2021. Will there be a ferry connection between Sweden and England, or Denmark and England? Will there still be low-cost flights for 150SKr to London? Can we meet in big gatherings etc? However, we will lay out the pre-plans here now, but ALL of this has yet to be confirmed.
- L’Arche Kent (where we live) don’t feel that they can take on something big like this next summer (2021) but we (Paul, Pal and our Churches) are happy to set it up independently of L’Arche.
- We spoke about the subject to be something like ‘Borders or not – we are all together’ or simply ‘Kommunitet International 2021’. Apart from having L’Arche people like us present, we will invite people from the Bruderhof Community here in Kent, who lives a life in community not unlike the Amish or Mennonites in the USA. They are a truly international community with members from all over the world. We will also invite people who set up a collective of refugees who (for whatever reason) preferred to live in community after leaving refugee accommodation here in Kent, and that is a first of its kind in the UK. We will also invite people from a faith based community who live in the countryside on a large farm, and they try to live organically and without money… well, we expect participants and guests from at least 20 nations… and of course SWEDEN!!!
- We want to do this as cheaply as possible. We have already been offered a tourist bus (56 seats) for free who will take people from Goteborg or Malmo to and from Kent/ England. It would be great if we could go by ferry, but if not, then we have to drive through Holland and/or France etc. The owners of the company who let us have the bus (and 2 drivers) for free are themselves Brethren’s, so have an interest in faith based communities as well. Our goal is that it will NOT cost more than £50 (approx. 600SKr) per person and perhaps £20 (approx. 240 Skr) per child, but we will do our best to make it cheaper than that. However, that will include transport from Goteborg (or Malmo) and food and accommodation for the whole trip. Our Churches here will contribute a lot of the actual costs, and the transport and mobiles homes are given to us for free!!!! You just need pocket money for Ice cream…
- A Quaker couple who owns a holiday park on the Kent coast (about 30 min from Canterbury) will offer us mobile homes for nothing, except gas and electricity, but we will include that into the pricing. Those holiday homes are really nice with several bedrooms each, soft sofas in the living rooms, private shower room with toilet and even a kitchen. We will also use that park as our base, and they have a large cafeteria that can be the hall for speakers and where we cook and eat. For those who don’t dare to swim in the sea (chicken!) they have two swimming pools, one specific for children.
- 3 meals a day will be buffet style and included, as well as soft drinks. …also, Paul has said he will make a special batch of beer just for us!!!! Lunch provided for most days, apart from a day when we will be going into Canterbury or Dover. That day we can take sandwiches or (if you have a lot of money!?!) eat in town.
- Most likely, the bus will leave on a Tuesday from for ex Goteborg, and arriving in Kent Wednesday to settle into our mobile homes. Thursday and Friday will be Kommunitet 2021 with speakers and workshops. Closer to the date we will also sort out children’s groups and/ or activities. Saturday the bus will take people to Canterbury for a day out and with an evening service at Canterbury cathedral. Justin Welby (Archbishop of Canterbury and head of all Anglicans) is a close friend of L’Arche and will great us if he can, and then back to our holiday park. Sunday will be a local service and the afternoon and evening we could have a party (if it is sunny) or a party(!) if it is raining… or just sit and talk to four in the morning… over a beer or two from Paul! …or locally made wine.
- Monday morning, we will ask everyone to help clean the mobile homes, and after lunch, the bus will turn back to Sweden.
- This is all based on leaving Sweden Tuesday 24 August and arriving back in Sweden Tuesday 31 August.
- The cost will NOT include transport from your home to Goteborg or Malmo. For some people, it might be better with a low cost flight directly to and from England, but we don’t know much about that at the moment.
- In the event that we will have more than 56 people wanting to come on the bus, we will prioritize those who came to ‘Kommunitet 2019’ in Broby. You can of course make your own way to and from England.
This is all just a base-line for what we are planning now, but we will not know more details until later in the year. A lot can change, but we promise we will do our best to do this to the lowest possible cost (I wish it could be free!).
For those who like to stay longer and experience more of Kent or the rest of England will need to pay commercial prices for a longer stay at the Holiday Park, but info about that can be given later in the year. You then also need to sort out your return trip home.
…or as Paul put it at the last meeting we had about this:
Broby is better than Japan, but I am better at beer! …so let that be our mantra!
Edit: If you want to get in contact with Paul and Pal in preparation for this, you can reach them by this email: Gemenskap2021@gmail.com