The very first decision to build a church on the southern side of Varangerfjorden, between the Pasvik river and Langfjorden, was made in 1857 and the chosen location ended up being called Kirkenes (kirke = church and nes = peninsula). The first church which was completed in1862, was a long octagonal wooden church designed by the architect Christian Heinrich Grosch. It was damaged during the bombardment of Kirkenes in 1944.

Among the gifts the new church received from businesses and private individuals were the altar silverware. The organ was a gift from A/S Syd-Varanger (which ran the local iron-ore industry at the time). Kirkenes Kirkeforening (an organisation of supportive parishioners) donated ten hand knotted wall hangings which can be seen on the walls of the aisles.

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Kirkenes kirke