Home            About Us            Newsletters            Support Us            Links            Contact Us

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

We Have Arrived

Just when we thought that everything was going ok, we had a problem!
After leaving Tenerife a day later than expected, Tim and the Deck and Engineering crew managed to catch up on their time and we entered the waters surrounding Benin around 9am on Monday morning. Great, a chance to catch our breath before picking up the pilot and sailing in to be greeted by our advance team in Benin and the arrival ceremony that lay in wait for us. At 12:45 the line handlers were called to their stations and everything was in place. But as they prepared to move there became a problem with the engine controls which meant we would only have two engines to go in rather than four. It was agreed by Tim and his Chief Engineer that this would be unsafe. This was a port that was known to be difficult to move in, even Mercy Ships has experienced trouble when the Anastasis unfortunately ended up hitting the dock during their last visit and made a BIG dent in the bow. This was something that Tim did not want to repeat!! The engineers worked hard to solve the problem but nothing was resolved so it was decided that the ship would anchor until a solution had been found. People gathered for prayer, aware that Benin is the voodoo capital of Africa....could this be a spiritual attack? The Marine Operations Department at our international base in Texas, prayed with the technical crew via a conference call. Isn't it great to have the support of so many faithful people. (Benin flag flying from the ship's mast)
Around 10:30 that night there was a loud rumble and the problem was solved.
The next morning we started heading in.
Unfortunately there wasn't the big welcome that had been planned the day before, but our advance team were their waving as hard as they could, along with a Mercy Team that will be with us for 3 weeks.
(Our advance team, all smart in african dresses...they have done a tremendous job to prepare for our visit)
The team was greeted by a crew member from Benin carrying his countries flag down the gangway. Hallelujah we are here!

No comments: