On Sunday 9 September, over 60 people from around the tiny community of Edithburgh on the Southern Yorke Peninsula, South Australia, gathered at the Flying Angel Centre for the blessing and opening of an alfresco, outdoor kitchen and memorial garden.
The Revd Canon Garry Dodd, Regional Director of The Mission to Seafarers (MtS) Australia had travelled from Newcastle, New South Wales to officiate. Before blessing the new area, and the crowd with seawater collected from the nearby beach, he gave an inspiring talk on the reliance of seafarers and the sacrifices they make. The Revd Dodd then declared the alfresco open by removing an MtS flag from a board of plaques.
Speaking about the new renovations, MtS Chaplain June Harrison said: “Along with the Flying Angel Centre hall and facilities, the whole project has made the Mission to Seafarers in Edithburgh a wonderful place for seafarers arriving in nearby Port Giles. Port Giles has nothing but silos, and Edithburgh is a very small town without facilities such as a supermarket or bank so the Flying Angel Centre is a home from home, providing seafarers with all their needs. More than that it has volunteers who show seafarers true Christian love and hospitality.”
The whole project had been made possible with grants and donations, and the wonderful efforts of the Harrison family. Geoff, immediate past Chaplain and a retired architect and builder, had the vision for the whole project and orchestrated its renovation. A Memorial Garden alongside the alfresco was established with fragrant native plants with a grant and support from the local Edithburgh Progress Association. The garden serves as a memorial to all seafarers lost at sea.
Among those attending were representatives from the Hobart MtS Committee, Cornelis Wegman; Member for Narrunga, Fraser Ellis; Mayor Ray Agnew; and Progress Association President, John Anderson.