News and Articles
16 September 2017
The Logos Hope is a ship operated by Operation Mobilisation, a non-profit Christian organisation which aims to bring knowledge, help, and hope to hundreds of countries around the world.
One way it does this is by spreading the Christian message in every port it visits, and by being the largest floating book fair in the world, selling both Christian and non-Christian books.
I was a member of a group of 10 who recently travelled to Dominican Republic to spend a week on the ship. We served on a Vision Team, learning about and participating in ship life, and we met Mark and Esther Dimond, who have been sent mission partners from Above Bar Church and involved in the charity for around 40 years.
Before boarding the ship, we received some advice. Be FAT! That wasn’t as insulting as it sounded. We were to be Flexible, Adaptable, and Teachable.
The advice was very appropriate. With news of the catastrophic hurricane Irma heading towards the Caribbean islands – including the Dominican Republic – our schedule would be completely turned on its head. The team was given a choice: either stay on land, or sail out south 150 miles with the ship. We came to the conclusion we would be able to make more of an impact on the ship, so on Tuesday, we sailed out with the ship to try to avoid the hurricane.
But before we sailed out, we had one day of working where the book fair was still open. Many of our team helped out in this department. We had a variety of tasks to do such as welcoming in people, being cashiers, and selling tickets to the public.
The highlight of my day was speaking to some of the volunteers from nearby churches who came to the ship to help translate to the locals who visited. Although most of their English was broken – and I had no knowledge of Spanish – it was great to be able to communicate with them even so, and share life stories with them. By the end of the day, they had even taught me a few phrases of Spanish, much to the amusement of the locals, who would laugh whenever I attempted any of them!
I believe that by joining Logos Hope for a week, I gained lots of knowledge, from learning phrases in Spanish to learning how the ship functions from day to day and how it brings textbooks and books to enable further education in countries where provisions are otherwise low.
On a deeper level, I gained knowledge of how God was at the centre of the ship and how the whole ship could not function without Him. I cannot think of another place where people from over 60 countries and nationalities could live in such close proximity for long periods of time and still show love and compassion for one another. It truly showed how God was at work in their lives and brought unity to the whole ship.