About Us

We plan to sail the same route as King Sigurd Jorsalfare, who sailed from Norway to Israel with 60 ships and 6000 men in 1108-1110 AD. Their journey is referred to in history as “The Norwegian Crusade.”

The crusades were not kind to anyone, whether they were Jews, Muslims, minorities or anyone else who stood in their way on the journey to the Holy Land.

That is why we have chosen to make this journey a reconciliation tour that symbolises atonement for the brutal actions of the past and a desire to demonstrate the true, life-giving message of the Gospel.

This time we come with peace, blessing and good deeds in our wake!

Our Aims

  1. To atone for the negative outcomes of the Crusades, of which King Sigurd Jorsalfare was a part.
  2. To bring blessing to the cities we visit in word and deed.
  3. To renounce all forms of anti-Semitism in our history.
  4. To thank the Jewish people for the heritage that we have received from their land – 1000 years of Christian Law.

How we will accomplish our Aims

  • By repenting on behalf of Norway for the misdeeds that were committed in each city by King Sigurd Jorsalfare.
  • By organizing events and charitable projects in the cities we visit, together with local churches and organisations such as Youth With A Mission.
  • By apologising to the Israeli authorities for all forms of anti-Semitism in Norway’s history. This includes Norway’s involvement in King Sigurd’s Crusade, the deportation of Jews on the SS Donau in 1942 and the ‘Jew Clause’ (Jødeparagrafen) written in Norway’s Constitution in 1814AD.
  • By bringing a Letter of Thanksgiving on behalf of the Norwegian people, thanking Israel for the Jewish and Christian values that founded Norway’s body of legislation in Moster 1024 AD.


In 1942, a ship left Oslo port, committing what has been described as Norway’s greatest crime in recent history: the deportation of 532 Jews to Auschwitz on the SS Donau on 26th November. In total, almost 800 Jews were deported to Germany over the course of the Second World War.

Another ship will leave Oslo, this time with a promise that such a thing will never happen again. We believe that Norway is meant to be a safe haven for the Jewish people and all other nationalities.

With antisemitism again on the rise in Europe, we believe we now have a unique and precious opportunity before us: to deal with the shameful acts of Norway’s past by offering a sincere apology on behalf of our nation, and following this up by practicing the opposite. 

Not only will we will distance ourselves from the negative acts of King Sigurd’s Crusade, but from all examples of anti-semitism in our history. This not only includes the horrors of the Holocaust but also the ‘Jew Clause’ written in Norway’s Constitution in 1814AD, banning Jews from entering the Kingdom of Norway.

This is a Reconciliation Tour that stands for human rights and rejects all forms of racism and antisemitism.


This journey is about turning the story around and seeking a fresh start. We are looking to our past in order to create a better future.

At each of the stops between Norway and Israel, we want to look back at some of the shameful moments in Norway’s history and take the opportunity to instead bless the cities that were wronged. There will be facilitated street ministry and acts of goodness in the cities we visit, all in collaboration with local churches and charitable organisations. As we come together with other believers in these places, we want to worship God together as one family, and pray for our cities and societies.

This is a Blessing Tour, a celebration of life and a joyful return to the Holy City of Jorsal!


In 1024 AD, Christian Law was established in Moster, Norway, and began a radical social upheaval – “from a society of power to a society of law”. It was a foundation for the Norwegian Church and contributed to the shaping of Norway’s democracy. It marked the beginning of a new era.

We will therefore sail from Oslo to Moster at the end of May 2024. There, we will take part in an event called ‘Moster 2024’, the official 1000-Year National Jubilee celebration of the establishment of Christian Law in Norway.

Learn More

From that event, our team will receive an official Letter of Thanksgiving from Norway to Israel. We will show gratitude for the heritage we have received from this land; for the faith and values on which Norway’s constitution was built a thousand years ago.

This is a Thanksgiving Tour, and it is time to return to Israel with gratitude for our heritage.

Our Team

Jorsalfarere is a Norwegian non-profit organisation based in Bergen that is founded on the vision of several individuals. These visionaries built the foundation for what is now an international event called ‘Returning to Jorsal’. Now they are supported by the Leadership Team and the Board who are responsible for achieving this goal.


John Malvin Eriksen
Øyvind Furnes
Terje Walther Gilje


John Malvin Eriksen – Project Manager
Nick Bendor-Samuel – Project Co-Manager
Øyvind Furnes – Finance Manager
Anne-Linda Thorsen – Ship Prayer/Worship Recruiting
Marianne Eide – Project Intercession
Kaia Brun – Project Intercession Co-Leader
Benedicte & Gjermund Mella – Visionary Team
Odd Martin Nerheim – Social Media

Our Podcast

Want to know more about this project?
Check out our Returning2Jorsal Podcast Episodes to hear in detail our vision, our own journey with this project and to get a glimpse into what’ll happen next year.