AoS makes a difference

Our Immingham port chaplain Fr Colum Kelly has been featured in a BBC World Service podcast where he speaks about how AoS’ ministry is making a huge difference to the lives of seafarers. 
                  The piece highlights how AoS provides practical and pastoral support to the thousands of seafarers who arrive at British ports, many of whom spend up to 12 months at sea, away from their home countries and families. 
                  He tells journalist John McManus, “A lot of what we do is small gestures; going on board to meet the crew and providing them with wi-fi access, phones and other things. These are all small gestures but taken together they make a huge difference and that’s what we’re here for – to make a difference.” 
                  Fr Colum relates how he once drove into town to buy a tablet computer after a seafarer from a Chinese ship asked for one. Despite being a major industry that employs thousands worldwide, many people are still oblivious to shipping and the lives of seafarers.
“We are dealing with an invisible world. Nobody comes to meet seafarers; nobody knows how they ply their trade. Look around your homes and you see television sets, lights and other consumer goods, all of which come by ships crewed by seafarers. Yet few people know anything about their lives,” said Fr Colum. 
                  You can listen to the podcast by going to this link. The interview with Fr Colum starts at 21:35.

AoS Immingham port chaplain Fr Colum Kelly with a seafarer