Wednesday, June 30, 2010


No one quite remembers if "SP" stands for "Social Permission" or "Special Privileges" because it's always just called "sp" and is the favorite thing to joke about on Logos Hope... but whatever it's called, the permission to be in a relationship is pretty special!

"The Sign" posted on the community notice board!

It's official! (And I was in my work clothes from the fire drill... :P)

(After a shower! :)) The new couple!


Saturday, June 26, 2010

Lifeboat Prayer

Lord, thank you for this drill
For this time we had to practice
Thank you for the skill You've given us
Thank you for safety
And that no one got hurt
Through this dangerous procedure
In an emergency help us to be prepared
Help us put into practice what we have learned today
That each of us could take our positions and remember what to do
Thank you for these lifeboats

But Lord we pray
We never have to use them

Friday, June 18, 2010

SIERRA LEONE - Did You Know?

-> Life expectancy: 41yrs. (compared to US 78yrs.)
-> 70% of population under poverty line
-> over 60% of the population is Muslim
-> 50% population age 16 and under
-> 1 in 8 mothers die in childbirth
-> 1 in 4 children die before age 5

These are just depressing-sounding statistics until you think about the people behind the numbers. When you see four curly-haired dark-skinned African kids playing and to think that one of the smiling youngsters will die (most likely by accident or disease) within the year... When you see two toddlers laid to sleep on the bare ground of what can barely be called a sidewalk, the nonchalant in which the six year old boy mentions his mother died yesterday because she was having a baby - his brother - both now motherless, and the fear in the Muslim man's eyes as he accepts the Bible you are giving him. the extreme poverty, some people walk around with cell phones and ipods... and both are somehow Africa.

Our first Help project in Sierra Leone was a bit of a unique one. We are a shipload of healthy people compared to most of the locals who are too malnourished to donate blood - so you can see why the nurses from the maternity hospital MercyShips started were so excited to have such a large blood bank literally sail right to their door! Yup, we've been in Europe, the Caribbean and Africa in the last year, have had the Yellow Fever vaccine, and are taking Malaria tablets but... we're IN Africa!!! It was cool to join the "party" of ship's company in boiler suits from the engine room, dusty workclothes, those who ran in from the galley (kitchen), and everyone else who took a few minutes to pop by in the middle of our work day to donate blood. In total we donated 45L of blood - each half liter worth US$50 - saving the hospital US$4,500 in buying from overseas donors! :)

Over 70 people attended the onboard "How to Start a Business" program today! I got to hear a bit of it and it was really quality teaching, and practical to help locals have some idea of how to start and run a good business. Our goal in this port is to pass it on - invest in influencers and encourage them to speak into others' lives and keep the blessing going on.

One of the changes we had to make coming to a new region was respecting a different culture in the way we dress and behave. Out are the shorts and knee-length skirts and in are the new fashions for Africa: long skirts or long pants for girls (showing our knees would be like going topless-!), and always long pants for guys. And it's sweltering hot.

African sunrises and sunsets are beautiful... it is pretty green jungle-y here compared to what I pictured the terrain to be like... and I'm still waiting for the safari animals from Madagascar 2 to appear somewhere!

PRAY for the spiritual warfare going on here; there was a "devil's dance" done right outside the port gate tonight, but also, God is doing a great work and my friend coming back from a church team shared many exciting stories of how Muslims are listening to the gospel and coming to Christ!

And all of this was just ONE day.