Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Chaplains stand in for St. Nick at Vancouver's port

Hundreds of presents given to seamen on ships in Burrard Inlet, English Bay
The Port of Vancouver's multi-faith Mission to Seafarers on board a water taxi Dec. 24.
(Alistair Burns / The B.C. Catholic)
Sailors stationed at a lonely post received a welcome boost just before Christmas Day. Four hundred presents were handed out to seamen on ships anchored in Burrard Inlet.
Three clergymen are stationed at the Port of Vancouver: Father John Eason, Catholic chaplain; Reverend Nick Parker, an Anglican; and Ernst de Vries from the Christian Reformed Church. 
"Any breadcrumbs out there to find our way back?" wisecracked Reverend Parker, a former Royal Canadian Navy officer.
The water taxi stopped next to freighters registered in Panama, Egypt, Greece, Norway, Egypt, Malta, China, and Singapore. Unique names such as Brilliant Sky, Patagonia, and Wadi Alkarnak floated off the tongues of the chaplains.
Sleepy crews made up of curious Filipinos, Sri Lankans, Poles, Chinese, and Greeks slowly trundled out on deck to see what was going on as the chaplains played St. Nicholas to 250 sailors over a nine-hour period.
Read the full article here.

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