Today over 90% of World Trade is carried by the International Shipping Industry. Without shipping, the Import and Export of goods on the scale Seafarers_logonecessary for the modern world would not be feasible. Approximately 50,000 ships trade internationally, transporting every kind of cargo. This world fleet is manned by over a million seafarers of virtually every nationality. If you include cruise ships, there are 50,000 mariners visiting Saint John annually.
The Mission to Seafarers was founded in 1856 in England and life for the seafarers was harsh, lonely and isolated. Ships and ports have changed considerably since those early days, but life at sea can still be dangerous and difficult. Seafarers still lose their lives in shipping casualties. Piracy is a major problem in some areas. Missions still report cases of non payment of wages, stranded and abandoned crews and problems related to safety and living conditions.
All this is in addition to traditional difficulties that seafarers have always faced, such as long periods away from homes and families, and isolation from amenities ashore that the rest of us take for granted.
Today, the Mission is at work in over 230 ports worldwide caring for the practical and spiritual welfare of seafarers of all races and creeds. This is accomplished by visiting them on their ships, offering them a welcome, helping them to keep in touch with their families, visiting them in hospital, and taking up justice and welfare issues on their behalf.
In over 100 ports, worldwide Missions run centres where seafarers can relax away from their ships and find a welcome, friendship and help with any problems.
Board of Directors
Paul Harquail (Chair)
Chris Hall (Vice Chair)
Heather Hansen (Treasurer)
Bishop Robert Harris
Capt. John McCann
Rev. Rob Salloum
Bev Sullivan (Mission Manager)
Rev Eric Phinney (Chaplain)