The Port of Tilbury was the meeting place between the Holy See and people of the sea during a visit by Archbishop Edward Joseph Adams, the Pope’s ambassador to the United Kingdom on Tuesday, 29 May.

The 73-year-old American Archbishop spent time at the London Tilbury Seafarers Centre, then went on board two ships – Federal Lyra, a bulk carrier, and Gerda, a tanker – to meet crew members.RC handshakeHe spoke with the seafarers about their work and lives at sea and gave them a blessing from the Pope.

Archbishop Adams’ visit was organised by seafarers’ charity Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) whose port chaplain Wojciech Holub provides practical and pastoral support to seafarers arriving at Tilbury Port.

The Papal ambassador expressed his admiration for seafarers, saying “theirs is a life of sacrifice”. He described them as “not only seafarers but craftsmen as well.”

The Port of Tilbury is a major gateway to London and the South East and handles cargoes from cars to grain and household goods – all of which are transported on ships crewed by seafarers.

On Sea Sunday, July 8, churches in Essex and across the UK remember seafarers and pray for them, their families and those who support them. It is a day to think about and thank seafarers who work tirelessly to bring food, goods and fuel to consumers

Nathaniel Xavier, 04/06/2018