A special greeting from Mayor Marte Mjøs Persen
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MARTE MJØS PERSEN
Mayor of Bergen
For this special edition of The Norwegian American, Mayor Marte Mjøs Person of Bergen brings a special message, celebrating her city’s sister city relationship with Seattle, a message of shared values, ideas, change, and hope.
Dear friends in Seattle and readers of The Norwegian American,
We are living in extraordinary times. We are worried about our loved ones. Our sons and daughters have lost their jobs. We are worried about the economy and our safety. More than a million people have lost their lives worldwide.
It is time for us to come together.
At the same time, here in Bergen we are celebrating the city’s 950th anniversary this year. Our city is founded on our close connection to the sea. As Bergensers, we have always had our horizon open to the world. We have, from the earliest time of history, traded fish to the rest of Europe and the world, bringing other goods back to our coast. But also other ideas, influences, and values. This has made us proud of our history and traditions, but at the same time, we work hard to adjust to new economic times.
We have always lived by, with, and of what the ocean has to offer, and we will continue to do so in the future as well.
For a long time, Seattle and Bergen have been sister cities. Our two cities are closely connected: we exchange ideas; we exchange art, music, and culture.
Nowadays we can’t visit each other, but we are still here, as friends. We just need to find other ways of meeting one another, other ways of working together, other ways to hold together.
Last, but not least, I, on behalf of the City of Bergen, want to thank the Seattle-Bergen Sister City Association for their gift to Bergen on our 950th anniversary, the virtual concert recorded at the National Nordic Museum in Ballard. We will keep this gift in our hearts and are forever grateful for our friendship.
See also “I am everyone’s mayor” by Lori Ann Reinhall, The Norwegian American, Oct. 23, 2020.
This article originally appeared in the Oct. 23, 2020, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.