Suviseurat Summer Services are a very large annually occurring religious event of the conservative laestadian revival movement within the Lutheran church. It is the largest religious gathering in the Nordic countries, with as many as 75000 visitors. Service guests from over 30 countries come there every year. These suviseurat summer services have been arranged since 1906, each year in a different location.
The service program consists of mainly sermons, hymns, and songs of Zion. Meeting friends for common fellowship is of great significance too. The sermons are based on a readings from the Holy Bible which are explained to convey the message of God’s love and grace to sin-fallen people. The sermons teach that when a person believes their sins forgiven, they get peace of conscience through the redemptive work of Jesus to ensure their life with an everlasting foundation.
In the central part of the service area is the service tent, in which the people gather to hear the sermons and worship services. The large service tent seats 4000 listeners.
Sunday mass worship services will be held in the service tent and at the same time in the Lutheran church in many of the surrounding communities. Holy Communion service in the big tent will be served by almost 70 priests officiating.
Sermons and songs will be broadcast through loudspeakers across the whole service area, most of the service guests will be camping at the service site in trailer caravans, motorhomes, and tents. During the 2017 summer service in Pori, sermons were interpreted into nine different languages while flags of 19 countries were flown to represent in which nations SRK organizes services.
The service site is like a self-sustaining midsize city, that provides all the service guests all the necessary needs and conveniences for the entire five-day event. Everything is constructed by and operated using volunteer labor.
The Suomen Rauhanyhdistysten Keskusyhdistys (SRK) or Central Organization of Finland’s Associations of Peace is the umbrella organization for all of the 178 local congregations. It serves and supports all the operations of the local associations.
More information about the SRK and local ry operations can be found from the SRK website www.rauhanyhdistys.fi