ALL GRACE – THE MISSION FOR THE PEOPLE OF SEA & SHORE
Seafarers International Ministries
Rev. John Van Hemert, Chaplain, 6178 Vermilya, Lantana, Fl., 33462
Dear Friends, Prayer Partners for the Harvest:
WHEN OUR LORD OPENS DOORS FOR THE GOSPEL, we truly believed and knew, for He promised He would. He called us all to prayer to reaches His lost and lonely people. We have felt this, for which we thank God and we want to thank you for your petitions and great help.
THEN THE LORD EXPECTS US TO GO THROUGH THOSE DOORS, which is possible only through the Holy Spirit. This is our testimony, to praise our Sender and bring thanksgiving to Him and to you all.
1. Many Captains and Crews on freighters are quite happy to receive Christmas services on board. For them we could bring gifts and Bibles. In response we received a lot of high fives and hugs along with “thank you Jesus….Happy Birthday Jesus!”
DUTCH JUMBO SHIPS
2. The Port of Palm Beach has become a major destination for heavy equipment for Florida Power and Light. Also, all kinds of smaller boats and yachts are being delivered and picked up here for world-wide destinations.
What these jumbo carriers have in common is that these have Dutch owners, captains and officers with crews mostly from the Philippines and Eastern Europe.
The special challenge is to connect with the Dutch. This is a real joy to spend time and some meals with them and speak the “mother tongue” of our former “Fatherland.” The reason I share this is to ask for your prayers for them. They are usually not open to the Gospel. When there is a worship service on such a ship only the Filipinos show up. Please give thanks for open doors.
CHURCH AT SEA
3. For the first time, the Bahamas cruise ship, the Celebration, (1200 passengers) had a Christmas service for passengers at midnight, Dec.24th. How we thank God for this open door. The crew services are now regular. There are some 400 crew members who are on duty 7/24 and have no opportunity to go on shore for Church. Contracts are usually of ten months duration. Please pray that this door remains open and that the Lord will open many hearts. PS. This ship comes to port every other day.
COLD MORNINGS IN THE PORT
4. We had six pretty severe cold fronts so far. Most sailors from warm countries such as Honduras and India are not prepared with adequate clothing. As a result on cold mornings we find a lot of need for stocking caps, hats, gloves and jackets. Thank you to those of you who have sent us supplies and funds to help out.
THE ONLY AND BEST HOPE IN LIFE AND DEATH FOR A GRIEVING SAILOR
5. One night a security guard, Arayon, from the Philippines, checked me in to visit the crew of a loading molasses tanker. A little later he joined us in the mess hall for breakfast. He appeared to have something on his mind and tried to get my attention, but with several others around, he left.
On the way out, here is the security guard again, by himself, to check me out. With considerable emotion he shared that his wife had passed away with childbirth 7 months ago, but the baby lived. He had been back just a few days for the funeral, but had to get back on the ship. He shared that she and he were Christians, but it is so difficult. Quietly under the dark sky, we shared together about our great Savior and the Glory of eternal life and Heaven.
COMMUNION ON DECK?
He tells me, that for over six months he had no worship service, nor communion. Sensing that he needed hope and the comfort of Christ, I asked him if he would take Communion right there. I had the set, bread and fruit of the vine with me. He eagerly accepted. With this dear brother it was a spiritually moving experience in which Jesus Christ gives that sustaining Grace and Love. Truly, Glory to God! Please pray for Arayon and many like him on the huge seas.
HOW TO HELP THE LEAST OF THESE
Matthew 25: 31-46
6. Please stay in touch. We would love and enjoy hearing from you. We would give you a tour of the Port and have you visit a ship with us when you come our way. Please see our link to our website and/or voucher for help to reach the strangers of the seas and shores.
Maybe this newsletter can go in the bulletin or monthly news letter. Or, if you can share with your family or friends, it will be much appreciated.
For a very interesting front page article see: PalmBeachPost.com and check issue Jan 19, 2007. entitled: “Volunteer Chaplain Brings Comfort to Crews in Port.”
We are affiliated with Action International Ministries, a Christ-centered Biblically based Mission to 25 countries with 261 missionaries. Our website with pictures and opportunity to help is:
OR, go directly to Action International, for the addresses below. They do our paper work and will send you a tax deductible receipt.
U S A: Action International Ministries, refer to Van Hemert,
P.O. Box 398, Mountlake Terrace WA., USA, 98043
Canada: Action International Ministries, refer to Van Hemert,
3015 A 21st., ST., NE, Calgary Alberta, Canada, T2E 7T1
We send this off to you with the prayers that our Savior and His great Salvation will be made known to more and more people and little people. We will be in prayer for you all.
Sincerely in Christ,
Jean and Pastor John Van Hemert, address and email on the top.
For USA Cell 561-351-1239, From Canada 206-778-1523