Stange church

Situated along Gudbrandsdalsleden
Laila Haugen Trøen
Medieval church from the middle of the 1200s located on ancient church site.

The church was built on top of an old farm called Stange that gave the church its name. The parish was pretty small in the Middle Ages since there were three parish churches only a few kilometres away. The other churches were abounded due to the Black Death. Stange church was the only active church in the village together with the annex church in Ottestad. By the end of the middle ages, the whole village took the name Stange, and it later became the name of the municipality after the merging with Romedal in 1964.

It is told in the saga by Håkon Håkonsson that the bells in Stange church were used when the rebel group Ribbungena attacked the village in 1225. The remains of the walls to an older stone church have been found under the floor of the current church. This was being built around 1250s.

Stange Church burned after a lightning strike in 1620. This fire destroyed the entire medieval inventory. The reconstruction work was started shorty after, this time they added towers. They also constructed a side ship facing towards north to make room for the growing community in 1703. The windows was also changed and replaced to give more light. You can see the traces of the work in the walls of the church.

The church's interior is from the 1600s (Baroque) or later: pulpit, large baptistery (baptismal-enclosure on the wall), enclosed gallery benches, not to mention the beautiful and rich altarpiece. Its main motive is the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ at God's right hand. Figures of all the apostles encircle the central message. Pilgrim apostle, James the Elder, pictured far right, with its hiking stake. He is also among the figures on the canopy over the pulpit.

Due to the coronavirus situation, the church is closed for visitors during summer season 2021.

Opening hours and contact details for Stange Church.

Photo: User: Mahlum / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain