John Pinhay, Falmouth & Fowey port chaplain for Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) recently received a message from shipping agents asking that someone who could speak Polish visit a seafarer who had been taken off a vessel after suffering a heart attack.
The crew members was originally taken into Treliske Hospital in Truro, but was then discharged to a hotel in Falmouth, where he had to wait until the doctors gave him the all clear to travel back home.
John said, “Fortunately, we now have several Polish families in the parish and I am particularly friendly with Greg Baczkura, whose daughter is one of my servers. Greg along with a friend and her two children accompanied me when I visited the seafarer at the hotel. He had little or no English, but with the help of our Polish friends we soon were able to get to know him.”
John continued, “His ship was only a few miles out of Falmouth when he suffered a heart attack. The owners through the agents were taking good care of him and he wanted for nothing. “However, he was glad to receive an Easter Egg and Palm Cross, along with various prayer cards. I established that he was Catholic and asked him if he would like to attend Mass at the weekend.”
The seafarer said he would very much like to go to Mass and Greg readily agreed to give him a lift to church. The seafarer has since been well enough to go home and before leaving sent a message to John thanking everyone for their kindness and support in his hour of need.
John (left) with the seafarer and Greg's friend and children.