St Magnus’, Lerwick

A very warm welcome to St. Magnus’ Church.

Whether you are visiting Shetland on holiday, have recently come here to live or are just passing by, we are pleased that you have visited us. We hope that this website will help to explain something about us and that you will be able to join us in worship. You will find details of our services elsewhere on this page.

We hope that you enjoy your visit to St. Magnus and your time in Shetland.



Shetland lies over 200 miles north of Aberdeen and a similar distance from Norway. This isolation has created a self-reliant spirit and a strong sense of identity and community. The main forms of travel to the islands are by boat via Aberdeen and aeroplane from Aberdeen, Edinburgh or Glasgow.

The Shetland Isles themselves consists of over 100 islands although only 10 are inhabited. They are beautiful islands, with three miles being the furthest distance you can be from seeing the sea. The majority of Shetlanders live on the main island. Lerwick the main town has a population of 7,000 people. After this, the rest of the 22,000 population is quite evenly distributed throughout the rest of the islands.

The main sources of economic activity in the islands are the oil industry, fisheries and aquaculture, agriculture, knitwear and tourism. Shetland Islands Council is the single largest employer. In recent years, Shetland has experienced a degree of economic instability due to a decline in the oil, fishing and aquaculture industries. However, there has been a growth in tourism. Shetland is not a quiet back water where nothing happens. Rather it is a vibrant, active community with lots of cultural and social activities. It boasts excellent sports and community facilities in addition to the diverse wildlife and scenic walks. The life of the church is closely connected with the life of the community.