Viewpoint from Rev Peter Paine for 20th July 2012
Rev Peter Paine
Port and Industrial Chaplain
Member of Gorleston Baptist Church
We are all aware that this year is the Queens Diamond Jubilee and the way she is going around the country to meet and greet as many of her subjects as she can. Also a little bird has told me that an Olympic flame is making its way around the country, to be in Londo
n by the 21st July. Many people have lined the routes just for a brief glimpse of the torch as it came through the town.
Then last Sunday it was a service to commemorate the 10th Anniversary of the Helicopter Accident, a sad time for the families and friends of those whose lives were lost. But in the past 10years they too have moved on into happier times.
As Port and Industrial chaplain I too am celebrating 10 years in this position. I have known good times as well as not so good, I have shared times of joy with seafarers as well as times of despair, I have visited them in hospital as well as prison, and in all this I have tried to show the love of God in all I do.
I work for the Mission to seafarers and also Good Work, but as a mission chaplain I get called to seafarers who want to telephone their loved ones whom they may not have seen for months or to the seafarer that has been brought by helicopter to hospital and is thousands of miles from home, and he may never go to sea again. Yes, this does
happen on your doorstep, and it is a weekly occurrence.
Many, even in this town do not know that seafarers exist. Our food comes from our local supermarket and the fuel for our car is just down the road at the nearest garage, or wood for that D.I.Y. job is in the local timber merchant. How does it all get to us? By seafarers who bring the goods into this country that we all take for granted. On a report about Piracy there is a quote that goes, “If you don’t think Piracy affects us in Britain, then think again! 40per cent of Europe’s oil has to travel through the region of the coast of Somali. If a crude oil tanker is hijacked and detained, then the lights go out in Birmingham.”
The Mission to Seafarers is now the biggest single provider of port based welfare services – dedicated to supporting crews with whatever care they need.
Please pray for seafarers all around the world for the entire different situation they face on a daily basis. Also pray that God’s love would reach them wherever they are and may the love of God richly dwell in your hearts.